The Beloved Community : Atlanta January 26th

Jobs With Justice Flier Emerson UU

Rep. John Lewis Supports Atlanta Jobs with Justice 8/29 Fast Food Strike

On August 29th 2013 Atlanta Jobs with Justice joined the national Fast Food Workers’ Movement in helping to orchestrate a strike of fast food workers in Atlanta, GA. Fast food workers from various restaurants went on strike for the day and were supported in their actions by community members that joined them in front of two McDonald’s, a Church’s Chicken, a Popeye’s, and a Burger King. In the afternoon there was a large rally outside of a few fast food restaurants in downtown Atlanta. Civil Rights Leader and Congressman John Lewis joined the rally and gave words of strong support and encouragement.

Join the Fight! – Atlanta is joining the Fast Food Worker Movement!

by Neil Sardana

Did you know?

The fastest growing jobs in the United States are also the lowest paid. Fast food provides an increasing share of our new jobs, but workers are paid between $10,000 and $18,000/year less than half what it costs to support a family in the Atlanta Metropolitan area.

Fast Food workers are not paid enough to afford basic needs like food, clothing, and rent. They often qualify for public assistance, which means that major profitable corporations are forcing taxpayers to subsidize their low wages and burdening the economy.

The Fast Food Industry (McDonald’s, Burger King, Chick-fil-A) is a booming industry which accounts for over $200 BILLION in profits. They should pay their hard working employees enough to cover the necessities and support their families.
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The Right to Organize in the South: Justice for School Workers.

by Roger Sikes

Atlanta Jobs with Justice travelled to the School of the Americas (SoA) Protest at Ft. Benning in Columbus, GA to stand with unlawfully fired school bus drivers that were organizing for better working conditions on the job.  Taylor Motors, a contracted company on the military base fired Miss Glenda and Miss Olivia for their leadership in the work place.

This effort is part of the Justice for School Workers campaign that aims to reinstate all earned unemployment benefits (WITH FULL BACK PAY) for Georgia School Workers as well as organize Georgia school workers in a broad, transformative way.  The Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler unilaterally denied earned unemployment benefits to 64,000 Georgia School Workers for the first time this summer (many school workers get laid off over the summer and other school breaks), throwing many workers into economic devastation.
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Stand Up with Unlawfully Fired Bus Drivers at the School of the Americas Protest.

by Roger Sikes

Every November, thousands of social justice activists gather at the School of the America’s (SoA) in Columbus, GA to protest the school that been used to train Latin American soldiers to murder and shut down political dissidents and democratically elected governments in the region.

Atlanta Jobs with Justice will be going to Columbus, GA specifically to support two recently fired bus drivers that worked at Ft. Benning. Miss Glenda and Miss Olivia. Miss Glenda and Miss Olivia are leaders in the “Justice for School Workers” campaign that aims to reinstate unemployment benefits denied to laid off Georgia school workers. This led into union organizing in their workplace where Glenda and Olivia are also strong leaders. Miss Glenda and Miss Olivia were unlawfully fired by their company (Taylor Motors – which has a contract at the military base) because they were standing up for their rights on the job. The company made this move to intimidate other workers that were organizing a union. We cannot tolerate any acts of retaliation against organizing workers in our state. We must hold this company accountable.

The People’s Court Part 2: Testimony Against Labor Commissioner Butler

Read Part I of the People’s Court here

by Roger Sikes

An impressive set of five work place leaders is assembled behind the judges, elevated slightly. The workers sit solemnly, looking out at the community assembled before them, prepared to share their testimony with the world. Bus drivers from Columbus and Savannah sit staunchly among the group, Sodexo food service workers from Morehouse College and Georgia Tech anchor the group while a Georgia Pre-K lead teacher sits in the center of those assembled.

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Historic Victory for AT&T Workers!

By Roger Sikes

On the  morning of March 26 Atlanta Jobs with Justice, Communications Workers of America Local 3204 and Occupy Atlanta united to declare victories. The groups announced a historic victory in preventing over 255 layoffs at AT&T, a result of community and worker pressure. AT&T workers whose jobs were saved by the campaign as well as key organizers will speak out. Following the press conference, the coalition of groups will close the 42 day long tent occupation.

Background:

AT&T workers had previously received a letter from the company in December 2011 informing them that there would be 740 layoffs in the southeast. AT&T’s announced slashing of good, middle class jobs followed an email graciously thanking its employees for creating record profits for the telecommunications giant while CEO Randall Stevenson was paid out a record $27 million.

On February 13th, activists staged a sit-in at AT&T’s Atlanta corporate offices in protest to the announced layoffs. The next day, hundreds of community supporters rallied outside the complex and launched over a month long occupation demanding that AT&T stop the layoffs and those scheduled to occur on March 15th.

 

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Big Victory For Community-Labor Coalition In Georgia

by Roger Sikes and Barbara Joye

Community-labor coalition rally

The successful campaign launched by a broad coalition of every day Georgians to stop SB469, a bill designed to kill both unions and peaceful protest and civil disobedience deserves a backward look.

.The bill would have imposed penalties on picketing a private residence (first if there is a labor dispute involved, then – to make it more “constitutional” – amended to apply to all cases); made planning as well as participating in civil disobedience that incurs a criminal trespass charge (the usual charge for this) a CONSPIRACY with very heavy fines both for individuals and organizations; and required unions to re-enroll their members annually!

This horrible legislation was defeated by a coalition of labor, Occupy Atlanta, Jobs with Justice, faith-based groups, DSA and many other community groups, most notably the local Tea Party, whose representative spoke eloquently to the media about the importance of first amendment rights.

Here is an account of how we killed the bill, by Roger Sikes, Staff Organizer, Atlanta Jobs with Justice, and a member of Metro Atlanta DSA:

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