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When Joe Biden was campaigning for president, he never came across as the most pro-labor candidate. Indeed, the left flank of the Democratic (or rather, anti-Trump) vote tended to gravitate toward Bernie’s full-throatedly populist, democratic socialist agenda. But in the end, Biden rode into the White House with a lot of the labor movement’s hopes—along with some healthy skepticism—pinned on him. Now that his administration is starting to roll out its labor agenda—which includes a number of progressive demands such as a $15 minimum wage, expansion of workers’ right to organize, and beefed-up health and safety protections—we’re taking a hard look at what the landscape will look like under Biden, especially now that the Democrats control both chambers of Congress. We talked to Celine McNicholas, Director of Government Affairs and Labor Counsel with the Economic Policy Institute, to get the low-down on what we can expect, and dare to hope for.
In other news, we remember Karen Lewis of the Chicago Teachers Union, and look at Amazon’s hiring practices in Britain, a new movement to organize influencers, the Fight for $15 strikes, and a transnational lawsuit against enslaved child labor in the chocolate trade. With recommended reading on teachers in the scramble for vaccines and Indian farmers in the streets of New Delhi.
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SAG-AFTRA Approves New Influencer Agreement (Backstage)
Amazon’s Empty Pledge Leaves Agency Workers Without Shifts and Pay (Bureau of Investigative Journalism)
Biden Moves Fast on Pro-Labor Agenda (nwLaborPress)
Argh, I wish I’d written that!
Michael Sainato, ‘It’s been scary’: getting vaccinated akin to lottery for US teachers, (The Guardian)
Ullekh N.P., In India, Farmers Are Resisting Narendra Modi’s Propaganda Machine, (The Nation)