Six Clever Cartoons on Income Inequality

By Michael Messina

On Monday, Governor Martin O'Malley of Maryland joined in on the effort to get minimum wage workers closer to earning a livable wage. His plan will raise the state minimum wage to $10.10/hr by 2018 and is one of several moves made by state governments to up the take home pay of those on the lowest tier, joining California, Hawaii, Connecticut and Washington, D.C. as well as a city effort by Seattle to raise their minimum to $15/hr.

In light of these developments, we give you some of our favorite political cartoons that shed light on the income inequality that has run rampant in this country. Enjoy!

Income inequality cartoon 3

Five Great Union-Made Gifts For Mother's Day

by Sahid Fawaz

If you’re looking for a great gift for Mom this Mother’s Day, we’ve got a terrific list for you. And the best part is that that they are all made by proud union members!

Buying union on the holidays is more than just an expression of solidarity – it’s a vote for union-made, American products. The more that we all buy union-made products, the more demand there will be for those products and, in turn, the more demand for highly skilled unionized workers.

So this Mother’s Day consider products from these unionized brands below and help support good middle class American jobs!

1. Ghirardelli (UFCW)

2. Revlon (UAW)

3. Russel Stover (BCTGM)

4. Avon (UFCW)

5. See's Candies (BCTGM)

The Seven Biggest Economic Lies

by Sahid Fawaz

Whenever the topics of inequality, wages, or social security come up, there inevitably follows a wave of myths and lies that distort the issues. These lies perpetuate outdated laws and mechanisms that hurt the working class and unfairly benefit the 1%. Robert Reich walks us through seven of these lies in the video below and explains to us the economic reality facing America today.


JetBlue Pilots Vote to Join Union

by Sahid Fawaz
Congratulations to JetBlue pilots who voted overwhelmingly to unionize and join the the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA).
According to the ALPA,
"The National Mediation Board (NMB) announced that the 2,600+ pilots at JetBlue Airways voted overwhelmingly to join the Air Line Pilots Association, International (ALPA).
Of the votes cast, 71% of JetBlue pilots voted for ALPA. The win shows the strong desire of JetBlue pilots to gain a meaningful voice in their future, the certainty of a collective bargaining agreement, and the resources needed to be relevant. These objectives motivated the overwhelming grass roots effort by JetBlue pilots which led to today’s vote."
ALPA president, Capt. Lee Moak, said, 
"JetBlue pilot members immediately have available ALPA's aeromedical advisors and insurance benefits. The Association's world-class safety structure is also ready to go. We'll now start working hand-in-hand with JetBlue pilot representatives to set up the structure for them to make democratic decisions about their future and help negotiate their first contract."
For more on this, watch Capt. Moak’s full remarks here:

Earth Day 2014: Four Enviro-Friendly Cars

It's Earth Day, and here at Labor 411 we like to be eco-friendly as well as labor friendly. To touch on both of those themes we found a few vehicles that are union made, by members of the UAW, as well as either fully electric or hybrid for us environmentally conscious drivers.

See below for some quick specs and links for these awesome vehicles.

MSRP: $34,1852014-chevrolet-volt
Gas Mileage: 35 mpg City / 40 mpg Hwy

Engine: Gas/Electric I4, 1.4L
Drivetrain: Front Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity: 4
Body Style: 4dr Car

Union-Made Easter

by Sahid Fawaz
We at Labor 411 love the holidays. We enjoy spending time with family and friends, celebrating traditions, and eating good food. 
And Easter is no exception. When Easter arrives it means that Spring is (finally) here, kids are excited to participate in egg hunts and get yummy treats, and billions of people from all over the world are observing the same religious holiday.
Of course, no Easter celebration would be complete without great food and sweets, many of which are made by proud union members. These workers belong to unions such as the Teamsters, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, the Bakery, Confectionery, the Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers, and the United Food and Commercial Workers.
We’ve put together a list of union-made products for you below so that you can support good union jobs this Easter while enjoying delicious quality foods!
Alta Dena
Horizon Organic
President’s Choice
Color those eggs: 
Durkee Food Coloring
Heinz Distilled White Vinegar
Basket fillers:
Cadbury Crème Eggs
Marshmallow Peeps
Jelly Bellies
Ghiradelli Chocolates
Mike and Ike’s
Tootsie Rolls

Union-Made Passover 2014

ManischewitzOn April 14, Passover begins at sundown and feasts of matzo ball soup, gefilte fish and plenty of wine will highlight this holiday celebrating the Jewish peoples’ liberation from slavery. Labor 411 wants to contribute to the Seder table this year, so we found a great charoset recipe via Epicurious. It’s super easy and everyone will love it.

Purchase your apples and walnuts from any of these union grocery stores and use our other union-made ingredients to sweeten the deal. See even more great union-made products below to make your Passover celebration the best in town.

The Shocking Truth On How Much Prices Would Increase If Walmart Paid A Living Wage

by Sahid Fawaz

It’s no secret that Walmart’s failure to pay a living wage to its employees results in the rest of us footing the bill in the form of food stamps to Walmart workers. Opponents of a wage increase argue that it would result in price increases. But how much of an increase are we talking about really? This terrific video from Slate provides an eye-opening answer.

Source: Slate

9 out 10 Fast Food Employees Say They Are Victims Of Wage Theft

by Sahid Fawaz

Poverty wages. Little to no benefits. Stressful work environments. These are just a few of the ordeals that fast food workers have to endure as their employers make obscene amounts of money.

And now it gets worse: Over 1,000 fast food workers surveyed allege that their employers paid them less than they were legally entitled to. 

According to the L.A. Times:

Out of 1,088 respondents nationwide, 89% said they have been forced to do off-the-books work, been denied breaks, been refused overtime pay or been placed in similarly unsavory circumstances.

The same holds for 84% of McDonald’s workers, 92% of Burger King employees and 82% of Wendy’s rank and file.

According to the survey, there were "[o]ther alleged misdeeds: employers paying workers late, asking employees to wait before cashing their paychecks or forcing cashiers to pay up if the cash register’s contents don’t match records." 

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