Gender Pay Gap Bot Made an Impact on IWD

Yesterday a wonderful little bot made a big splash during International Women’s Day (IWD). The Gender Pay Gap Bot on Twitter called out deceptive companies which “celebrated” IWD and advertised how much they care. The bot retweeted each corporate IWD tweet with a simple message revealing the median pay gap between male and female workers.

The bot is possible because the British government requires companies to publicly disclose average pay; you can see the data here. The more workers talk about pay the more likely they are to get paid better.

Follow the Gender Pay Gap Bot.

Work Culture is Changing for the Better

Collision at home

Managers who care more about time than results will have to change thanks to better approaches to work. The idea of having to sit at physical location all day regardless of how busy you are is no longer acceptable. A new attitude to work is a postive thing about the pandemic; ongoing flexible hours, a four day work week, and results driven work are all being considered.

Workers aren’t asking for more money, they are asking for respect.

“It is a lot more feasible, possible, imaginable, accessible because we’ve practised so much working from home,” said Ezzedeen, who holds a PhD in organizational behaviour and development.

“And people have developed ways of working from home — setting up their home office, figuring out how they’re going to talk with a team, investing in the technology to support it. So there’s no going back.”

Thompson said a results-only work environment requires a shift in thinking about what it means to manage.

“The manager is not managing ‘me’ anymore. The manager is managing work. Not me. I don’t have to ask permission to go to the dentist. I don’t have to say, ‘Oh, I’m coming in at nine this morning instead of eight. Is it OK If I go to my child’s play?’ All of that crap disappears.”

Read more.

Google Workers Create Union

Interview

Unions are a reaction to poor working conditions, and it’s clear that some Silicon Valley companies have created the need for unions. Google, which has been actively suppressing workers who stand up against injustices are now seeing their workers unionize. This is a symbolic victory for the labour movement in the tech world and a clear success for the people working at Google.

From afar it looks like the tech unions in the States are going to be modelling themselves more like the Screen Actors Guild than the more popular conception of unions like those at auto plants.

“This is historic—the first union at a major tech company by and for all tech workers,” Dylan Baker, a Google software engineer, said in a statement.

“We will elect representatives, we will make decisions democratically, we will pay dues, and we will hire skilled organizers to ensure all workers at Google know they can work with us if they actually want to see their company reflect their values.” 

Google workers have some history of collective action. In 2018, thousands of the workers signed a petition protesting Project Maven, a contract to help the Department of Defense track individuals in video footage captured by drones. That pressure campaign was ultimately successful, as the contract was terminated.

Read more.

Thanks to Greg!

Today Scholars go on Strike to Bring Attention to Racial Injustices

The recent strike by NBA and WNBA players has shown that reactionary and direct labour action can make meaningful change beyond just the workplace. In the WNBA & NBA, the workers (players) refused to play in protest of police bracingly killing non-white people, the strike resulted in basketball arenas being used as a voting station in the coming American election. The media attention the workplace action got can’t be ignored either.

In the world of academia a similar action is happening today. Scholars across North America will put down their work to draw attention to the racial injustice happening on campuses. They won’t stop teaching though, you can attend online session today to learn about the troubles facing radicalized individuals and precarious workers on the front lines of postsecondary education. One such event is embedded above.

Scholars across Canadian universities are outraged at the relentless anti-Black police killings of Black people in the U.S. and in Canada. As athletes have done, so, too, must academics. We will be joining thousands of academics in higher education in a labour action known as Scholar Strike to protest anti-Black, racist and colonial police brutality in the U.S., Canada and elsewhere. Scholar Strike for Black Lives in Canada will take place on Sept 9th & 10th, 2020. For these two days, we will pause our teaching and all administrative duties. We will use this time to organize public digital teach-ins on police brutality and violence in our communities from both historical and contemporary perspectives.

The program of public digital teach-ins through Sept 9 & 10 and other relevant resources will be released soon. We have confirmed a key note address by journalist and activist Desmond Cole and cross-campus digital teach-ins that will bring together activists, artists and scholars from York University, University of Toronto, Ryerson University and OCAD University.

Check the strike out and learn something.

Unions Bring Big Benefits to California

Foodora work

If you work in a unionized environment you’re likely doing better than a person in a non-union environment according to a study done in California. You’re also less likely to make use of the state’s welfare system. What’s more this means that the whole state benefits from unions as more economic activity is happening as a result with less costs imposed on the social welfare system. The pandemic has really made it clear that unions can make a big difference in how workplaces react to the economic troubles.

  • Workers covered by a union contract in California earn an average of 12.9 percent more than non-union workers with similar demographic characteristics and working in similar industries.

  • Overall, we estimate that unions increase workers’ earnings in California by $18.5 billion annually through collective bargaining.

  • Unions decrease by 30.6 percent the likelihood that a worker is in a family where at least one member is enrolled in a public safety net program, compared to non-union workers with similar demographic characteristics and working in similar industries.

Read more.

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