The Economy of Race and Class Inequality: A Dream Deferred
Valerie Wilson, director of the Economic Policy Institute’s Program on Race, Ethnicity, and the Economy. Prior to joining EPI she was the vice president of research at the National Urban League’s Washington Bureau. She’s written extensively on issues of wealth disparities and access to higher education and was selected to deliver the keynote address at an event on Minority Economic Empowerment at the Nobel Peace Center
Manuel Pastor is professor of Geography and American Studies &
Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. He’s the founding director of the Center for Justice, Tolerance, and Community at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and professor Pastor currently directs the Program for Environmental and Regional Equity at USC and is co-director of USC’s Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration. He’s co-authored Uncommon Common Ground: Race and America’s Future and authored This Could Be the Start of Something Big: How Social Movements for Regional Equity are Transforming Metropolitan America
For workers the recession exacerbated their economic hardship. But, for corporate America it created the opportunity to mold the economy into something approximating the Third World model: vast wealth, power and privilege for those at the top, and chronically high unemployment, falling wages, and limitations on benefits and inadequate or nonexistent public benefits entitlements for the rest of society. The new normal for America is that it has become a sweatshop nation.While we have experienced generations long wealth inequality the gaps are widening and particularly so for people of color. Our discussion will tackle the development of capital during this period and complementary government policies that have led to a decline in the fortunes of the working class and the super exploitation of people of color. And then our discussion will explore what is required to change course and bring about a greater redistribution of wealth for the 99%.
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WORKERS OF THE WORLD TUNE IN! Introducing "Building Bridges: Your Community & Labor Report"
Our beat is the labor front, broadly defined, both geographically and conceptually. We examine the world of work and workers on the job as well as where they live. We examine the issues that affect their everyday lives, with a particular sensitivity towards human rights abuses, environmental concerns and the U.S. drive for global domination. We record their global struggles and provide analysis of their efforts to empower themselves and transform society to provide greater democratic, human, social, political and economic rights. Each program consists of feature stories, generally interviews, within a historical context, often accompanied by sound from demonstrations, rallies or conferences, and complemented and enhanced by poetry and instrumental or vocal -- people's culture.
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The Economy of Race and Class Inequality: A Dream Deferred
Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice
Jessica Gordon Nembhard, economist, author, Prof. of Community Justice and Social Economic Development in the Dept. of Africana Studies at John Jay College
Jessica Gordon Nembhard’s research & policy analyses connect community- based economic development with community based approaches to justice. Her multi-dimensional research now fills a particularly glaring gap in our understanding of the significance of the African American cooperative movement in the U.S., one of the largest in the world. She explores the practice of community economics; cooperative economics and worker ownership and liberates our imagination for better ways to organize
our economic lives
Immigrant Cleaning Women Themselves Start Worker-Owned Green Cleaning Coop Pa’lante
Members of Pa’lante Forward Green Cleaning
Make the Road a community organization that seeks to empower Latino and working class communities just celebrated the opening of Pa’lante Green Cleaning. Pa’lante’s fifteen cleaning women, now worker-owners with the assistance of Make the Road joined together to solve the common issues they faced as workers in the cleaning industry, such as the starvation wages, job insecurity, and poor health and safety conditions. Now they have become the city’s 25th worker cooperative business and are part of a growing coop movement that is proving how workplace democracy can address issues of income disparity, create quality jobs and support local economic development.
Washing Out Industry Wage Theft,
Demanding Dignity on the Job and Union Representation
Mayor Bill de Blasio
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman,
City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito
Carwasheros are the thousands of workers who shampoo, wax, dry, and detail cars and who are among some of the most exploited workers in New York. They frequently work in appalling conditions for low or, in many instances no wages. Too often car wash owners flout labor laws, health and safety regulations and environmental protections in their single minded drive for profits. But carwash workers throughout New York have come
together in the Wash New York campaign and have succeeded in voting to unionize eight workplaces and have won contracts at six of them. They’re a part of the trend of low-wage workers organizing throughout the country and breathing life into the cause for workers justice and we'll hear all about their organizing for workers’ rights.
National Union of Metal Workers
Fighting the Class Struggle in South Africa
Mphumzi Maqungo, Treasurer, National Union of Metal Workers
On May Day 2014 Building Bridges Building Bridges spoke with one of South Africa’s foremost leaders of the workers movement as their national election approaches. The National Union of Metal Workers, South Africa is South Africa’s largest trade union with more than 339,000 (339,567) members. It is an active affiliate of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu), the biggest trade union federation in South Africa. The union considers itself to be Marxist-Leninist and has had a fraught relationship with COSATU and the African National Congress for its silence on controversial ANC policies, especially its promotion of privatization and its failure to end the wealth