Studies have shown that the time workers believe they have to themselves really belongs to an authoritarian presence, particularly on weeknights. For no apparent reason, a subject will up and leave a movie, a party, even a steamy moment of passion. In 97 percent of the cases, the explanation the subject gave was the same: “I have to work tomorrow.”
This is a story of how the Gamaliel Foundation and the Transportation Equity Network (TEN) took to heart author Jim Collins’ (Good to Great) prescriptions and set about realizing a ‘Big Hairy Audacious Goal’ of moving one million unemployed, underemployed, people of color, women, and poor people into construction jobs with good pay.
In spring 2006, Community Labor United (CLU) won its first campaign: to get Boston Public Schools to change its contracting policies, and to hire local residents for high-wage union painting jobs and training opportunities.
In the aftermath of the 2001 California energy crisis, several energy companies were sued for overcharging and contributing to the fake shortages. The companies eventually settled, and $4.5 million of that settlement is earmarked for the city of Oakland, to be spent over the next three years on renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. Thanks to the Oakland Apollo Alliance and the Oakland Mayor’s Office of Sustainability—and pending formal approval in early 2007—$100,000 will be used to create the Oakland Green Jobs Corps.
When the fledgling United Automobile Workers staged their decisive sit-down strike of 1936-37 in Flint, Michigan, they won union representation for auto workers, collective bargaining, and better wages and benefits for workers in Flint and throughout the auto industry. But as has been true for so many other industrial midwestern cities, global competition has decimated Michigan’s manufacturing sector and left the state with one of the highest jobless rates in the nation.