The AFL-CIO, in advance of its September convention, has issued a call for "listening sessions," a way for working people and allies to come together and add their creative ideas and strategies.
A federal bankruptcy judge in St. Louis has left Patriot Coal's retirees - whom it inherited from Peabody Energy and Arch Coal - high and dry, and said Patriot could dump its union contracts, too.
Positions of authority, millions of dollars of personal wealth, slick public relations consultants, $1,000 per hour lawyers, privilege, and power cannot conceal the true purpose of this bankruptcy.
The actions, organized by UMWA, were in support of the union's campaign to save health care for retired miners and win better wages, benefits and working conditions for miners on the job.
The revamp will meet the conditions of changing workplaces, extend labor's reach, and shift its emphasis within the federation to more inter-union and regional cooperation.
"There is a war on workers in this country." Instead of "brass knuckles and gun thugs, corporate lawyers" are helping Peabody rob retirees.
The nation's largest coal companies created the spin-off company, Patriot Coal, in a scheme to rob thousands of union members and beneficiaries of their pensions and health care benefits.
On Sept. 11, 1897, thousands of coal miners ended a 10-week strike after winning an eight-hour day, semi-monthly pay, and abolition of company stores.
Reece will be forever known for the song, "Which Side Are You On?" written in 1931 during the "Harlan County War" strike in which her husband, Sam Reece, was an organizer.
Mine workers welcome Obama's plan to make it easier in cracking down on coal companies that are constant safety violators. However specific rules need to be enforced in order to further erode the systemic problem, unions say.