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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 14, 2013 | By Chris Megerian, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - The decision to furlough state employees during the financial crises of recent years may have saved money in the short term but will leave a big bill down the road, the Legislature's budget advisors said Thursday. The state will owe $1 billion extra to many workers when they retire or quit, for vacation time that went unused while they were being forced to take unpaid days off. The furloughs were intended to save $5 billion from February 2009 to July 2013, effectively cutting workers' pay 5% to 14%. The $1 billion for unused vacation - some in excess of state accrual limits - will eat into those savings, according to a report by the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office.
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NEWS
December 17, 2013 | By Susan Rohwer, guest blogger
On Tuesday, sex worker activists will gather to mark the 11th annual International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers . Vigils in New York, Los Angeles and around the world will be held to highlight the everyday violence sex workers face and to honor those who have died. But the day is not just about remembering those lost; it's also about acknowledging sex workers as something other than victims. It's a chance for sex worker activists to fight for greater rights and visibility and to push for saner laws that make sex workers safer rather than pushing them further underground.
BUSINESS
November 30, 2012 | By Marc Lifsher
Lawyers for Inland Empire warehouse workers are raising the stakes in a legal battle with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. over hours, pay and other conditions at a giant distribution complex in Riverside County. On Friday, they unveiled an amended complaint filed in U.S. District Court alleging that Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, ultimately is responsible for pressuring a contractor and subcontractors to work more quickly. Wal-Mart said it would contest the allegation at an initial Jan. 7 court hearing.
NATIONAL
April 25, 2013 | By Cindy Carcamo, This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Aslam Khan, owner of 165 Church's Chicken eateries, still has the text message - a plea from a general manager at one of his restaurants in Indiana: “Please don't fire me. If I lose my job, I lose everything. Please let me stay in the company.” The request had moved Khan so much that he read it aloud to a round table of business executives meeting in Scottsdale this week to discuss their frustrations and concerns about immigration law - and their hope Congress passes some sort of reform to address those worries.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 7, 2013 | By Emily Keeler
After months of stalled negotiations over salaries, workers at Amazon's German warehouses are threatening to walk out for the Christmas shopping season. It would not be the first time German workers walked out on Amazon . Verdi, the Services and Trade Union, has organized short strikes in Leipzig, Saxony and Bad Hersfeld this year. Workers represented by Verdi in Amazon's distribution centers have been trying to force Amazon to recognize collective bargaining agreements in the mail order and retail industry as wage benchmarks for workers in the distribution centers.
BUSINESS
March 12, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
March Madness starts this week and there's a lot of money at stake, including more than $1 billion in wages paid to distracted workers and $2.5 billion in illegal bets. The NCAA basketball tournament will suck 90 minutes out of each workday for 2.5 million workers, according to a report from employment consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas . If last year is any indication, employers will pay out $175 million in wages to workers who are sneaking peeks at games online, checking scores or managing office pool brackets during the first two days of the tournament, according to Challenger.
NATIONAL
November 24, 2012 | By Joseph Serna
A fire erupted at the State Department headquarters in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, seriously injuring three maintenance workers. The fire ignited about 11 a.m. in ductwork on the building's seventh floor, the Associated Press reported. Employees put out the flames before firefighters arrived at the scene. Three maintenance workers were hospitalized. One of them, according to the AP, was listed in critical condition. The other two were reported in serious condition. The fire started during routine maintenance work in a mechanical area of the building, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told the AP. Workers temporarily evacuated the building but returned later in the day.   ALSO: Deputy at Texas pileup: "Children bleeding...cars on top of cars" Black Friday melee on video at Georgia Wal-Mart, trampling in Texas Woman who punched Wal-Mart worker, 70, gets 5 years in holiday attack Follow Nation Now on Twitter and Facebook
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 1, 2013 | By Matt Stevens
Workers in two of Bay Area Rapid Transit's largest unions were on strike Monday morning, halting service for an estimated 400,000 passengers who use the nation's fifth-largest rail system each weekday. SEIU Local 1021 spokeswoman Cecille Isidro said workers began their strike across the Bay Area around 2 a.m. Monday after the final trains were put to bed. From a picket line at the Lake Merritt station in Oakland, she said the union expects that a majority of workers will take part in the strike.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 15, 2013 | By Randy Lewis
Two workers were critically injured Thursday night while helping set up for this weekend's Ultra Music Festival in Miami when a giant LED video screen fell, trapping them under it, the Miami Herald reported. Fire rescue officials said both men suffered life-threatening injuries, one with both his legs broken when the screen fell. Two other workers were less severely injured by falling equipment; one was hospitalized in stable condition, the other treated at the scene. Ultra Music Festival, billed as “the largest electronic dance music festival in the world,” was still set to open at 3 p.m. EDT Friday as scheduled.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 1, 2013 | By Carla Rivera
Dining hall workers at Pomona College have voted to unionize, culminating a three-year campaign that thrust the small liberal arts college into controversy over immigration policy and labor rights. In the election Tuesday, 83 members of the dining hall staff cast ballots, voting 57 to 26 to join UNITE HERE, Local 11, a union that represents about 20,000 hospitality and food service workers in Southern California. “I feel very happy we made it,” said Benny Avina, 46, a catering chef who has worked at the college for 27 years, starting as a dishwasher.
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