Work & the Economy

COMMENTARY
Student Loan application form

It’s about time student loan borrowers get some help. They’ve earned it.

BY: - September 6, 2022

Hard work ought to be rewarded and good news should be celebrated. President Biden’s announcement that millions of student loan borrowers could see some of their federal loan debts forgiven recognizes the hard work they put in to get an education and the personal responsibility they took on to pay for it. It is also […]

Colectivo workers, labor activists, and IBEW members stand in solidarty outside of a Collectivo location in the Riverwest neighborhood of Milwaukee. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Report finds conditions are looking up for workers in Wisconsin — including increased power

BY: - September 5, 2022

Unemployment is down, wages are up and Wisconsin workers are more willing to talk union this Labor Day.  That’s the summary of the newest State of Working Wisconsin report from COWS, a University of Wisconsin research center that looks at the state of the economy through the eyes of the broad workforce. “The question we’re […]

COMMENTARY
Union sign held by labor protesters

U.S. labor movement on the rebound

BY: - September 5, 2022

On Labor Day, right-wing prognosticators like to revel in the supposed demise of the U.S. union movement. While there may be a kernel of truth in the data – organized labor only represents 6.4%of the private-sector workforce – gross numbers are misleading and don’t begin to show today’s unfolding story of a newly invigorated union […]

COMMENTARY
Unite Here Local 2 hotel workers protest for a fair contract at the Westin St Francis in San Francisco | Pixabay Photo

Resurgent labor movement empowers all workers

BY: - September 4, 2022

This Labor Day, as we enjoy the day off that has become a cherished part of Americans’ late summer calendar, let’s take a moment to reflect on the history this holiday commemorates and the role our resurgent labor movement is playing going forward. By the late 1800’s, the Industrial Revolution had transformed society in both […]

U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson argues against direct payments of $1,200 to families during debate on the next round of federal COVID relief on Dec. 18 (Screenshot from C-Span)

How government aid helped Ron Johnson

BY: - September 2, 2022

In his two terms in office, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) has run hard against government spending. Since his first Senate campaign in 2010, the Oshkosh Republican has described himself as an outsider and business creator who has succeeded without government help.  He has dismissed big-ticket bills as wasteful, telling a TV host in June that […]

COMMENTARY
President Joe Biden in sunglasses looking happy with a big smile and clapping

The Inflation Reduction Act will create climate jobs for Wisconsin workers

BY: - September 2, 2022

Wisconsin is entering a boom cycle in renewable energy development. From utility-scale solar projects that will replace aging infrastructure to plans for the manufacturing of the needed component parts here, progress is now a question of “when?’”and “how?” instead of ”‘if?” Thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) signed into law by President Joe Biden […]

non-union pickets

Nonunion workers turn to federal labor law to challenge employers

BY: - September 1, 2022

After what they said were repeated problems with their pay and working conditions, employees at a Madison apparel and screen printing business sent the owner a petition last week describing their frustration. They wanted a meeting at which they could discuss complaints that they said included missed payroll, stifling hot work rooms and a lack of […]

A man wearing a protective mask rides his bike in New York City during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some cities are keeping expanded bike lanes and pedestrian spaces in place, stoking the long-running feud with motorists over control of public rights of way. Kostas Lymperopoulos CSM via ZUMA Wire via The Associated Press

Cyclists, pedestrians and motorists clash over COVID street changes

BY: - August 30, 2022

During the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, cities including Boston, Chicago and Los Angeles installed dedicated bus lanes within a matter of months. To aid struggling restaurants, many cities eliminated parking spaces to allow curbside pickup zones for takeout and delivery. Communities closed off lanes or even whole streets to make space for pedestrian-only […]

UW Health nurses vote for 3-day walkout in September to gain union rights

BY: - August 26, 2022

A Wednesday night vote by hundreds of nurses working for UW Health to strike if the hospital system’s management does not recognize their union followed months of conversations, meetings and strategizing among more than 2,000 nurses employed by the largest health care provider in Madison. Nurses involved in the campaign say that the decision to […]

Hufcor factory

Janesville manufacturer that fled to Mexico is selling off its assets

BY: - August 19, 2022

Less than a year after Hufcor closed its plant in Janesville and moved operations to Mexico, displacing 150 workers, the company’s Mexico plans appear to be a bust and the manufacturer’s assets in its one-time home state of Wisconsin are being liquidated. On Thursday, Dane County Circuit Judge Frank Remington authorized the court-appointed receiver for […]

construction worker

State’s jobs numbers, unemployment are both up, although not by much

BY: - August 19, 2022

Wisconsin employers added nearly 10,000 jobs in July, the state labor department reported Thursday, continuing job growth that has been steady for six out of the seven months of 2022. At the same time, however, “we didn’t see the normal pop we get in June and July in the workforce,” said Dennis Winters, chief labor […]

Baldwin spotlights infrastructure law, climate bill on visit to Madison factory

BY: - August 10, 2022

Fresh from a marathon weekend in which Senate Democrats moved long-awaited budget legislation to address climate change across the finish line, Sen. Tammy Baldwin paid a visit Tuesday to the place where the rubber meets the road.  Or the electrons meet the vehicle. At Franklin Electric, a manufacturing plant on the far southeastern edge of […]