Formado sindicato dos trabalhadores da Google (II)

Google Staff Launch Union, Escalating Tension With Leaders (Bloomberg):

“A lot of us employees are feeling disempowered, like we don’t have a say in the direction the company is taking anymore,” said Google software engineer Kimberly Wilber, an activist with the new group. “A union is of our way of building power so executives can’t ignore us.”

Google has clashed with some employees in recent years over contracts with the military, a plan for a censored search engine in China, the different treatment of contract workers and a rich exit package for an executive ousted for alleged sexual harassment.

Um aspeto interessante é que as lutas laborais na Google/Alphabet parecem não ter apenas a ver com aquelas questões que os sindicatos normalmente se preocupam (salários, férias, horários) mas também com questões tradicionalmente consideradas como domínio da administração, como que produtos desenvolver (ver as polémicas sobre os projetos “Dragonfly” e “Maven“).

Formado sindicato dos trabalhadores da Google

Hundreds of Google Employees Unionize, Culminating Years of Activism (New York Times):

The creation of the union, a rarity in Silicon Valley, follows years of increasing outspokenness by Google workers. Executives have struggled to handle the change.

Diga-se que esse modelo de sindicalização – um sindicato para todos os trabalhadores de uma empresa (ou de um grupo empresarial) – é algo um pouco estranho para os padrões portugueses (nem sequer sei se seria legal); cá o normal é ou um sindicato por profissão, ou um sindicato por setor de atividade (a Alphabet Workers Union acaba por parecer mais o equivalente a uma comissão de rrabalhadores).

A epidemia e a luta de classes à escala mundial (II)

Fever – Class struggle under pandemic, um site sobre os conflitos sociais desencadeados pela covid-19, em vários países.

A epidemia e a luta de classes à escala mundial (I)

Class Struggle in the Time of Coronavirus: An Incomplete Chronicle of Events (16-21 March), artigo da “Tendência Comunista Internacionalista” publicado no Libcom sobre os conflitos laborais originados pela covid-19.

Vaga grevista nos EUA (III)?

Um mapa interativo das greves (normalmente “selvagens”) que tem ocorrido nos EUA a respeito do covid-19, normalmente com trabalhadores a exigirem equipamentos de proteção, ou até que o local de trabalho encerre enquanto a epidemia durar:

Vaga grevista nos EUA (II)?

Workers Launch Wave of Wildcat Strikes As Trump Pushes for ‘Return to Work’ Amidst Exploding Coronavirus (It’s Going Down, via Libcom).

Vaga grevista nos EUA?

A epidemia da Covid-19 tem vindo acompanhada de uma onda de greves, muitas delas ilegais e/ou à margem dos aparelhos sindicais.

When Working Means Deadly Risk, Backlash Brews, por Josh Eidelson, na Bloomberg:

The coronavirus worker rebellion, inchoate as it is, is remarkable precisely because the U.S. in so many ways is set up to prevent such things from happening. Congress in 1935 passed a law guaranteeing workers the right to collectively bargain, strike, and protest, but riddled it with loopholes and limitations that, combined with a slew of economic transformations, technological innovations, corporate strategies, court rulings, and hostile laws, have rendered it a pretty empty promise. Workers who try to unionize can legally be forced to attend meetings where managers issue ominous “predictions” about what will ensue if they do. Workers who try to strike can often legally be “permanently replaced.” Usually, the most that managers have to fear if they fire an employee for organizing is perhaps having to reinstate that person eventually with back pay, and without having to pay punitive damages or accept personal liability.

The coronavirus hasn’t swept away workers’ fears that protesting could get them fired. But for a growing number, it’s helped to overcome them. At Instacart, where delivery workers are classified as independent contractors explicitly excluded from labor protections, the fear that refusing work could get you denied future shifts has kept many workers from participating in past protests, says strike leader Vanessa Bain. But the pandemic has changed the calculation: “It’s a lot easier for somebody to decide, ‘I can’t continue to shop, because if I get sick, my grandparents are going to get sick.’”

The crisis is emboldening workers in other ways, too. It’s trained a spotlight on the companies that still get to operate while everything else shuts down, and the workers that allow them to. That means harsher scrutiny from the public, politicians, and the press on businesses that seem to fall short of their duty, and a widespread valorization of the “essential” service and logistics workers who are often ignored. In periods like this, says University of California at Santa Barbara historian Nelson Lichtenstein, “they demand recognition, and society is giving it to them—and why isn’t their employer?”

Dos IWW às lutas na Google e na Uber

The Radical Guidebook Embraced by Google Workers and Uber Drivers (New York Times):

Just before 20,000 Google employees left their desks last fall to protest the company’s handling of sexual harassment, a debate broke out among the hundreds of workers involved in formulating a list of demands. (…)

 

But the argument that gained the upper hand, especially as the debate escalated in the weeks after the walkout, held that those approaches would be futile, according to two people involved. Those who felt this way contended that only a less formal, worker-led organization could succeed, by waging mass resistance or implicitly threatening to do so.

 

This view, based on century-old ideas, did not emerge in a vacuum. It can be traced in part to a book called “Labor Law for the Rank and Filer,” which many Googlers had read and discussed.

 Its authors are a longtime labor historian, Staughton Lynd, and an organizer, Daniel Gross. They identify with a strain of unionism popularized in the early 1900s by the Industrial Workers of the World (…)

 And Googlers aren’t the only ones who have drawn inspiration from the book. Workers at the crowdfunding company Kickstarter, the site of a recent union campaign, have studied it. Organizers with one of the largest Uber driver groups say the ideas have influenced them as well.

 Ares Geovanos, a longtime volunteer for the Tech Workers Coalition, which seeks to organize workers across the industry, said the book’s key contention — that a dedicated group of employees can accomplish more through actions like strikes than by formal efforts to certify a union — had gained traction partly because it reflects reality: Most tech workers have traditionally been reluctant to organize.

A situação nos EUA é bastante diferente da portuguesa (p.ex., lá os sindicatos são certificados oficialmente, por votação, como representantes legais dos trabalhadores de dada profissão e/ou empresa), mas apesar de tudo essas organizações informais não-certificadas parecem-me ter algum paralelismo com o aparecimento cá de sindicatos não alinhados com as centrais sindicais (como os motoristas de matérias perigosas, os enfermeiros ou o Sindicato de Todos Os Professores), e que nalguns casos (nomeadamente os enfermeiros e o STOP) parecem por vezes funcionar menos como organizações estruturadas e mais como simples siglas para dar cobertura jurídica a greves largamente self-service feitas por trabalhadores quem nem sequer estão neles filiados.

Ver o meu post de maio,Um espectro assombra o mundo, o espectro das greves.

Um espectro assombra o mundo – o espectro das greves (III)

Trabalhadores avançam para a greve na General Motors (Esquerda.net):

As negociações entre sindicato e fabricante automóvel falharam. Pela primeira vez em doze anos, os 49 mil trabalhadores estão em greve esta segunda-feira por melhores salários e menos precariedade.

Kaiser healthcare workers plan for nation’s largest strike since 1997 (Salon):

More than 80,000 Kaiser Permanente emergency medical technicians, nurses, respiratory therapists and other staffers are threatening to walk out of work next month, in what could be the nation’s largest strike since 1997.

Ver o post de maio, Um espectro assombra o mundo, o espectro das greves.

Um espectro assombra o mundo, o espectro das greves (II)

Cerca de 60 voos cancelados no aeroporto de Bruxelas devido a greve de controladores – “Greve surpresa de controladores aéreos belgas está a afetar os aeroportos de Bruxelas e Charleroi, a sul da capital.”

Estive a tentar perceber como é que uma greve é proclamada de repente – parece que tudo começou com reuniões em que a administração is explicar o novo acordo de empresa aos trablhadores; como grande parte das pessoas estaria a trabalhar à hora da reunião, os sindicatos proclamaram um greve para essa hora para todos os empregados poderem assistir; em resposta a empresa cancelou a reunião (e de qualquer maneira a greve continuou).

Esta greve, pelos vistos, até foi convocada pelos sindicatos convencionais, mas mesmo assim acho que se enquadra (tal como as que têm havido em Portugal) no padrão de greves não-convencionais (até porque parece que está a ser considerada como uma greve selvagem).