The United Steelworkers union representing Marathon Petroleum workers said to its members on Wednesday that the company’s pay raise offer is “ridiculous.” The USW union said the offer would give workers a 1% pay increase each year of the three-year contract. A spokesperson for Marathon Petroleum said they are committed to bargaining in good faith.
See Erwin Seba, "Union calls 1% annual pay rise offer for U.S. refinery workers ‘ridiculous’", Reuters, January 27, 2022
The Biden Administration will begin enforcing their vaccine mandate for health care workers on February 14th in states where injunctions were lifted. 10.4 million health care workers at 76,000 facilities will be affected by the mandate. In some Republican-led states, employers will find themselves caught between the federal mandate and conflicting state demands. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, earlier this month about 81% of nursing home staff members were fully vaccinated nationwide.
See "Vaccine mandate to kick in for first wave of health workers", U.S. News & World Report, January 27, 2022
On Wednesday the NLRB confirmed that workers in a Staten Island Amazon warehouse had met the requirements to hold a union election. The workers, known as the Amazon Labor union, had to collect signatures of support from at least 30% of workers to be awarded the union vote. An Amazon spokesperson said the company is “skeptical that there are a sufficient number of legitimate signatures.”
See Julia Love, "Amazon workers eligible to hold union election at New York warehouse – NLRB", Reuters, January 27, 2022
Bank of America is offering a new stock awards program to their lower-level employees. Usually, these employees get a one-time cash bonus of $750. Now employees who make up to $500,000 a year will receive 65-600 stock units, depending on their compensation. The shares could be valued anywhere from $2,900 to $27,000 based on salary. The company says the stock awards “are designed to attract and retain talent.”
See Matt Egan, "First on CNN: Bank of America is giving workers $1 billion of stock", CNN, January 26, 2022
Recent research has shed light on the importance of digital skills to older workers in the job market. The AARP Foundation and Google have partnered to provide technology trainings to low-income workers 50 and up. The program will begin over the next two years in eight states. They will target women and people of color and hope to serve 25,000 people.
See Lorie Konish, "Older workers who lack digital skills at risk of losing income. An initiative from Google and AARP aims to help change that", CNBC, January 26, 2022
Workers at an REI store in Manhattan filed for a union vote on Friday and have asked the retailer to voluntarily recognize a union. The election will cover about 115 employees, and they will be represented by the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union. One employee said that they filed for the union in part because of “a tangible shift in the culture at work that doesn’t seem to align with the values that brought most of us here.”
See Noam Scheiber, "Workers at REI store in Manhattan seek to form retailer’s only union", The New York Times, January 26, 2022
Kroger-owned grocery store King Soopers workers have ended their strike in Colorado. A tentative agreement was reached late last week and on Monday night, overwhelmingly ratified. The over 8,000 workers who walked off the job on January 12th will now return to work. Details of the contract haven’t been released but the union said, “some workers would receive pay raises of more than $5 per hour.”
See Dave Jamieson, "King Soopers workers end strike in Colorado", HuffPost, January 25, 2022
The union vote for Alabama Amazon workers is set to end on March 28th and labor reps are optimistic about the outcome. After voting down the union last year, nearly half of the 6,143 workers at the facility are new to the company. On a Monday conference call, reps from the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union said that they have “a better chance of securing a contract this time.” One worker said, “The loss was a blessing, it made us motivated to win even more.”
See Lisa Fickenscher, "Alabama Amazon warehouse workers tilting pro-union, labor reps say", The New York Post, January 25, 2022
The Chicago Transit Authority has reached a tentative agreement with Amalgamated Transit Union Locals 241 and 308. The deal will cover 8,500 workers and will be effective with a backdate of December 2019. The four-year agreement will expire in late 2023. The agreement calls for increased pay and changes to worker scheduling.
See David Roeder, "CTA reports labor deal with transit union", Chicago Sun Times, January 25, 2022
Citi bank has asked their NYC area workers to return to the office on February 7th. They are requiring all workers to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and firing those who don’t comply. For other locations, Citi is watching local health data before making changes to policy.
See Lydia Moynihan, "Citi asks NYC-area workers to return to the office in February", The New York Post, January 24, 2022