OK

Well, this is vile. As Gawker's Hamilton Nolan describes it:
In this video, you can see that when a taxi driver with a foreign accent goes to the podium to address the Taxicab Commission, the Commission's chairman, Ron Linton, stops him and tells him that anyone wishing to address them must provide the commissioners with a written copy of their remarks, or else they're not allowed to speak. Another commissioner explains that the commission requires written testimony because "a lot of our cab drivers have difficulty with our language. It's very difficult for us to understand some of the people that testify." [...]

And the kicker: at the end of the video, an American cab driver without an accent comes up to speak, and notes that he has no written testimony. The commissioners tell him to go ahead and speak, because "we do understand you."

DC cab drivers have recently been organizing to join the Teamsters, and here you get a taste of what they're up against and why joining together to fight back is so necessary.

And more:

  • Boeing is threatening to move production of its newest jet after union workers rejected contract concessions. In fact, the company used the threat of moving production to try to get the workers to accept the concessions.
  • Maine representative and gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud recently made a small splash by coming out as gay; Bruce Vail reports on Michaud's working-class roots and longtime union support:
    Michaud has been a member of the United Paperworkers International Union since 1973, when he joined as a teenager, according to Michaud spokesperson Ed Gilman. Michaud began work alongside his father at the East Millinocket mill operated by the Great Northern Paper Co. and continued working there even after his election to the Maine House of Representatives in 1980 and to the state Senate in 1994. It was only after his election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2002 that he stopped regular work at the Great Northern mill, Gilman says. But he still maintains his membership in the union, which merged with the OCAW in 1999 and then became part of the United Steelworkers (USW) in 2005.
  • Really, Goodwill? Paying disabled workers less than a dollar an hour?
  • Maryland teacher petitions to cancel state standardized test:
    I am a teacher at a MCPS. I am very familiar with the amount of capital and human resources administering the Maryland State Assessment requires. Even though MD is switching over to the Common Core State Standards, which will be assessed by PARCC, the state is planning to administer the MSA this year. Our testing coordinators have literally been told the scores won’t be looked at or matter. If this is the case, it is an irresponsible waste of taxpayer money and instructional time to administer this test.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Thu Nov 14, 2013 at 03:00 PM PST.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions.

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