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Lengthening hours, lessening pay, no parental leave, scant job security: never have so many workers needed so much support. Yet, the very labor unions that could garner protections and help workers speak up for themselves are growing weaker every day and an age of rampant inequality of increasing social protests and strikes.

When a majority of workers say they want to be union members, why does the union density continue to decline? Shaun Richman offers some answers in his new book, "Tell the Bosses We're Coming: A New Action Plan for Workers in the 21st Century."

Shaun Richman has spent a decade and a half as a union organizer and representative.

Earl Dotter

Renowned labor photojournalist, Earl Dotter, has photographed workers in various occupations for the last 50 years. His photos capture the humanity and nature of work in the US. He has documented the lives of coal mine workers in Appalachia, farmworkers, fishermen, nurses, 9-11 rescue workers, and some of the major events of the labor movement in U.S. history.

The exhibit "Life's Work: A Fifty Year Photographic Chronicle of Working in the U.S.A." will be shown at the LOB Concourse Level in the Legislative Office Building in Albany, New York from April 22 through the 26. 

We are joined by Earl Dotter, Northeast NY Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health Director, Matt London, and Outreach and Education Coordinator Rossana Coto-Batres. 

In his new book, "The Edge of Anarchy: The Railroad Barons, the Gilded Age, and the Greatest Labor Uprising in America," Jack Kelly offers an account of the explosive 1894 clash of industry, labor, and government that shook the nation and marked a turning point for America.

At the pinnacle of the Gilded Age, a boycott of Pullman sleeping cars by hundreds of thousands of railroad employees brought commerce to a standstill across much of the country. Famine threatened, riots broke out along the rail lines. Soon the U.S. Army was on the march and gunfire rang from the streets of major cities.

Jack Kelly will be reading from and signing the new book at Oblong Books on January 10, Northshire Books on January 11, and at The White Hart Inn on February 7.

From the beet fields of North Dakota to the National Forest campgrounds of California to Amazon’s CamperForce program in Texas, employers have discovered a new, low-cost labor pool, made up largely of transient older Americans. Finding that social security comes up short, often underwater on mortgages, these invisible casualties of the Great Recession have taken to the road by the tens of thousands in late-model RVs, travel trailers, and vans, forming a growing community of nomads: migrant laborers who call themselves “workampers.”

On frequently traveled routes between seasonal jobs, Jessica Bruder meets people from all walks of life: a former professor, a McDonald’s vice president, a minister, a college administrator, and a motorcycle cop, among many others―including her irrepressible protagonist, a onetime cocktail waitress, Home Depot clerk, and general contractor named Linda May.

Jessica Bruder is a journalist who reports on subcultures and economic justice. Her newest book is Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century

Tzuhsun Hsu/Flickr

Restaurant workers are planning to rally Monday against a proposal by Governor Andrew Cuomo to examine the elimination of tip credits in New York.

Thomas A. Kochan, is the George M. Bunker Professor of Work and Employment Relations at MIT's Sloan School of Management and Co-Director of the MIT Institute for Work and Employment Research.

"Shaping the Future of Work" lays out a comprehensive strategy for changing the course the American economy and employment system have been on for the past 30 years. The goal is to create more productive businesses that also provide good jobs and careers and by doing so build a more inclusive economy and broadly shared prosperity. This will require workers to acquire new sources of bargaining power and for business, labor, government, and educators to work together to meet the challenges and opportunities facing the next generation workforce.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

EDIT 2/8/17: The text of this article has been updated to show that the Blackstone Group sold its stock in Momentive in August. The original audio of the story remains posted. 

A group of New York state lawmakers appeared in Saratoga County on Monday to meet with picketing union workers at a Waterford chemical plant.

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Nathan Littauer Hospital in Gloversville says nurses represented by the New York State Nurses Association planning to strike next week will be locked out. The union that represents 112 nurses at the Fulton County facility is planning a strike to begin September 1st until September 6th.

  Technology is becoming ever more capable of doing jobs that we once thought were only capable of being done by humans like driving cars,  unpacking boxes, driving cars, detecting emotions, even analyzing legal documents. For centuries technological innovation mostly complemented human labor by creating new and better jobs, facilitating higher productivity, and improving standards of living, but now many fear the technological advancement has reached a point where it will no longer complement many forms of labor but replace them all together. 

In His new book, Humans Are Underrated: What High Achievers Know That Brilliant Machines Never Will, fortune senior editor at large, Geoff Colvin, argues that despite our growing anxiety of a world that technology puts a majority of people out of work that this bleak future is not inevitable. 

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says the state Labor Department has recovered more than $6.1 million in wages due to workers in the state during the fiscal year ending June 30.

Bill Owens: The Wealth Gap - Solutions

Mar 27, 2015

There has been much chatter out of Washington about the wealth gap with both Democrats and Republicans promoting wildly different perspectives, but not offering much in the way of solutions.

James Green is a celebrated labor historian and author of the book Death in the Haymarket. His new book is The Devil is Here in These Hills, a chronicle of West Virginia’s coal miners and their fight for unionization and civil rights. The book is particularly relevant today as the arduous battle for the rights of West Virginia miners rages on. 

A new analysis measures the health of the economy: the report offers an optimistic outlook for the next two years.

   We are very happy to continue our new regular feature on the RT, entitled – Ides Matter: Checking in with the Public Humanities. It is our chance to check in with the Humanities Councils throughout our 7-State area to discuss important ideas and why they do indeed matter.

This morning we spotlight Connecticut at Work. The yearlong programming initiative explore a changing workplace, changing culture of work, changing workforce.

Stuart Parnes – Executive Director of The Connecticut Humanities Council joins us this morning.

A deal has been struck that for now averts a strike by 14,500 longshoremen at major ports on the East Coast and Gulf of Mexico.

A federal mediator announced Friday that an expired contract for workers in the International Association of Longshoremen would be extended for another 30 days while negotiations continue.

The longshoremen had been preparing for a possible strike Sunday that would probably have crippled operations at ports that handle about 40 percent of all U.S. container cargo.

     A small college in Springfield Massachusetts has been awarded a federal grant for its nursing school.  It will help respond to a  national call for a more  highly educated and ethnically diverse workforce in nursing.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Today in Pittsfield, a detailed analysis of the Berkshire County labor market was presented by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston to highlight the changes, strengths, and challenges facing workers and employers in region. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports…

Connecticut labor officials say the weak economy is making it harder to force companies to pay unpaid wages.

The Department of Labor says it recovered more than $5.5 million in unpaid wages for workers in Connecticut in the year that ended June 30. Officials responded to 3,800 complaints about unpaid wages.

That's down from $6.1 million recovered last year in response to 3,682 claims.

Gary Pechie, director of the wage and workplace standards division, said Friday that businesses are fighting state officials and refusing to pay. Other companies are out of business.

Occupy Albany is back, this time with a specific platform to change New York government and politics.  WAMC’s Ian Pickus reports…

The group credited in part with pushing Governor Andrew Cuomo to accept a higher tax on millionaires plans opening ceremonies from noon to midnight Tuesday across from the Capitol, coinciding with international May Day protests.

The park is within shouting distance of the Democratic governor dubbed "Governor 1 Percent" because of some of his policies and because his biggest campaign contributors are top corporate executives.