November 20, 2009 Volume 110 Number 22

WTO — 10 years later
Ten years ago Nov. 30, 50,000 people protested a meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Seattle, Washington. It was one of those rare moments in history when ordinary people rise up and can no longer be ignored. The protests succeeded in delaying the summit’s opening day, and contributed to the collapse of plans for a new round of trade negotiations. And the ensuing week of protest was the coming-out party for a broad-based movement to oppose the “business-first” model of globalization.

Umatilla chemical depot workers to get $3.6 million backpay
As many as 900 current and former workers at the Umatilla Chemical Agent Disposal Facility are expected to get backpay checks totaling $3.6 million, thanks to some serious union persistence.
Labor reacts to Washington election results
On election night, labor activists throughout Washington rejoiced at voters’ rejection of a ballot initiative sponsored by longtime union adversary Tim Eyman. In Vancouver, City Council member Tim Leavitt was elected mayor, defeating incumbent Royce Pollard; both had labor support.
Geek Squad union election cancelled
Hopes that local Geek Squad workers might unionize will have to wait. Members of a unit of 24 home theater installers working at Oregon and Southwest Washington Best Buy stores tried to join IBEW Local 48. But the day before the union election, the union withdrew after an employer campaign that placed the outcome in doubt.  

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