• Instacart: Here's our 22 cents — no more tip theft, low pay, and black-box pay algorithms
    We are Instacart workers. Some of us work buying and delivering groceries full-time, and some of us work part-time. Some have been on the platform for just a few months, and some for years. But since November, all of us have seen dramatic cuts in our paychecks. Some of us have seen wages lowered by 30-40% overall. Some of us have had to work twice as many hours just to make ends meet. Now, we’re speaking out to demand that Instacart address these issues by agreeing to a predictable, transparent pay structure. Until Instacart implements these changes, we're asking that customers tip just 22 cents up front in the app (then add your tip after delivery or tip in cash) to show that you support workers. Instacart has changed their pay structure from a predictable system where we knew what each gig would pay and why to a new model where it seems they pay as little as they’re able to get away with, and even use customer tips to get away with paying us less. This means they're offering very low wages that can even fall under the equivalent of the minimum wage. The company claims their new model is more "transparent," but in reality, the new model gives no indication of how pay is actually determined. The pay per job is now inexplicable — and much lower. Under the old model, shoppers were paid a specific base rate per delivery (e.g. $9.25 in Tacoma) and then an item incentive (40 cents per item we picked up). Under the new model, there’s no breakdown of how pay is determined. Shoppers often reject jobs only to see the same jobs re-appear minutes later with slightly higher pay, indicating that Instacart is simply trying to sell the job to the lowest bidder with no other obvious standard for how a given job should be paid. ***THE INSTACART TIP PENALTY*** Instacart is also practicing a sneaky form of tip theft by using customers' tips to subsidize their own costs instead of passing those tips directly on to the workers. Under the new model, Instacart pays less to workers for gigs where customers have left higher tips, so customers' tips are essentially being paid to Instacart rather than to the workers ourselves. If customers don't tip up front, Instacart pays more. This essentially works like a tip penalty, where instead of being "extra," tips are just used to make up for not paying workers decently in the first place. Using tips to subsidize Instacart's costs hurts workers and customers alike. Led by Instacart workers of Washington state: Mia Kelly (Seattle); Corrinne Pettitt (Tacoma); Ashley Knudson (Tacoma); Phoenix Di Corvo (Bremerton); Mark Moran (Seattle); Lori Tripp (Gig Harbor); Hannah Leighton (Bellingham); Ryan Munsell (Lynnwood); Samantha C. Sanabria (Tacoma); Terri Harstad (Bremerton); Julia Mascarella (Seattle); John LeMaster (Lakewood); Austin S. (Bellingham); Josh Siliaga (Seattle); Theresa Herstad (Bremerton); Renee Cable (Federal Way); Kris Sanderson (Mountlake Terrace); Patricia M. (Montesano); Rick Flickenger (Seattle); Rachel Jenkins (Vancouver); Ethan Bendorf (Port Orchard); Caitlin Santos (Steilacoom); April Cipriano (Tacoma); Rhonda Kirkes (Spanaway); Janssen Sartiga (Seattle); Jackie H. (Shoreline); Jaimee S. (Des Moines); Deanna Brewer (Seattle); Dawn Sabatella-Burnam; Jessica Habbe (Seattle); Jessica Clark (Edmonds); Anna Butler (Kent); Eva Skillings (Vancouver); Kristin Klatkiewicz (Kent); Martina B. (Lake Stevens); Michelle Padilla (Marysville); Jamilyn Salas (Tacoma); Alviena Ross (Olympia); Rachel Ross (Spokane); Chelsea Ward (Spokane); Lee Holland (Kent); Angela Sumers (Tacoma); Andrew Lincicome (Monroe); Bryan Sanford (Snohomish)
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  • AMC is a large company with revenue to AFFORD to PAY EVERY INDIVIDUAL employee O/T H/P sick leave
    We do the same, if not more, than management. So how are they paid time and a half on holidays while other AMC employees don't receive holiday pay? They've told me they're not required to by law. I looked into it myself and found out that the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) exempts us (hourly crew) from its overtime requirements “any employee employed by an establishment which is a motion picture theater.” 29 U.S.C. §213(b)(27). The FLSA was enacted in 1936. Movie theaters have drastically change since then -- so have the job requirements and daily job duties of movie theater employees. For example, not all movie theaters only show movies anymore -- they have full service dine-in restaurants that still serve food whether or not you buy a movie ticket. I believe that the movie theater exemption should be taken out of the FLSA in order to truly protect the everyday employee, but even so, that doesn't mean that AMC can't provide greater benefits for its hourly employees right now. I believe companies such as AMC, who make well over a billion dollars in revenue a year (5 billion reported in 2016), can afford to pay the new era of movie theater employees overtime, as well as holiday and sick leave like salaried employees already receive.
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  • Uber & Lyft: Reverse the Rate Cut
    More and more drivers are living in their cars. Unable to afford housing based off earnings as a driver, or unable to travel the distance home. More and more drivers are spending less time with their families, seeing their children, or taking care of themselves, because they cannot afford to turn their app off. What once was a reliable way to make income has become a cycle of driving as many hours as possible to barely scrape by. As Uber and Lyft prepare to go public this year with IPO offerings, they are doing everything in their power to show the profitability of their business. And they are doing this by taking more and more money from their drivers. Uber just reached a new low - cutting drivers’ mileage rates from $0.99/mile to $0.68/mile. Not only did Uber decrease the overall mileage rate, they changed the way drivers receive surge pricing - which is an incentive pay that drivers rely on to make a living. Prior to the change, surge pricing was based on a multiplier of the total trip (i.e 1.8x surge would earn the driver an additional 80% on the overall trip). The current change in surge pricing places a flat dollar rate such as $2.50, with a note that claims “you may earn even more than this amount on longer rides.” The key wording here is “may.” Driver experience has shown us that while some trips have added additional surge, others have not. Uber’s lack of transparency on how they formulate and determine surge payouts leaves drivers guessing what their fare will be. Gig Workers Rising is taking action against Uber and Lyft’s unyielding greed. Reverse the rate cuts and give drivers a voice! Join us by taking action and signing our petition.
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  • $15 One Fair Minimum Wage for MSP Workers
    The workers at MSP, the cleaners, cashiers, servers, cart drivers and more, that make the airport function every day make as little as $10.65. Glen Brown, a wheelchair assistance driver for Delta sub-contractor G2 for three years and a member of SEIU Local 26 said "I live in St. Paul with my wife and kids, so I've seen the cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis win the $15 minimum wage for workers in those cities. Why not here at the airport? We deserve the same pay and respect as workers in cities that border the airport!" For Feben Ghilagaber, a UNITE HERE Local 17 member who has worked at the airport for 13 years, $15 is important because "many of my co-workers are parents working 2 jobs. We believe at an airport as wealthy as MSP that one job should be enough!" Thousands of workers would benefit from raising the minimum wage to $15 at the airport, which would pump close to $13 million into the Twin Cities economy through wage increases! Right now, the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) is considering raising the airport minimum wage to $15 One Fair Wage! Please sign this petition to let the MAC know that you support them raising the airport minimum wage to $15 One Fair Wage! Brought to you by: SEIU Local 26, UNITE HERE Local 17 and the Minnesota Airport Workers Council
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  • Bring back raises
    $10 an hour is hardly anything in this economy, especially for part-time employees trying to support their families. Teens working at McDonald's start off around $15.
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  • #ThePriceOfRetail for workers during the holidays
    For an industry that brings in $250 billion dollars in profits in NYS/NYC each year, there is plenty to go around and the successes of the industry should translate to greater flexibility and share of the profits by the workers. With your support, we can bring these issues to our city and state lawmakers and show employers that their consumer base wants them to do the right thing by their workers.
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  • Boycott REI: Wages & Hours Matter, We Matter!
    REI’s CEO, Jerry Stritzke, and the Board of Directors are well aware of our hardships, which we have voiced as loud as we can. Collectively, we have faced: homelessness, medical debt, having to rely on food stamps to feed ourselves, even selling our plasma so we can pay the rent, and living off of credit cards. REI’s leadership has known about our struggles for years, and yet they have no plans to make any meaningful investments in their dedicated retail workforce, also known as REI’s Green Vests.  Amazon, Whole Foods, and Target have committed to a $15/hour starting wage and the retail workers of #OptOutside are asking our co-op to do the same. On average we start at a little over $10/hour and in some regions under $10/hour. Help us hold REI accountable to the values it was founded on. BOYCOTT our beloved co-op until our leadership announces a $15/hour store-wide wage increase, more full-time opportunities for regular sales associates, and more hours for every retail worker, so we can all make ends meet. We would like to stress that a living wage increase alone is not sufficient. Payroll cutbacks have plagued our work culture and they would become more drastic. It is essential that our leadership commit to a scheduling policy that offers us more full-time opportunity, which would ensure that a broader number of store employees receive guaranteed health benefits and a retirement plan. It is also imperative that REI commits to giving its green vests more hours overall, because too many of us are scheduled so few hours that we are struggling to survive our jobs. Stand by REI’s extraordinary retail workforce. If thousands of REI members and outdoors lovers sign in support of this petition, it will make a difference. Your voices will be heard! REI will do right by us if this petition amasses thousands of supporters. Help us to continue doing what we love doing best — educating and outfitting you all for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship. Gift us a campfire story like no other. Wages matter, hours matter, we matter!
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  • Uber and Lyft: Give Drivers a Voice
    “When Uber deactivated me, I had been driving for them for 2 years. One day, I woke up and couldn’t log in to the app. Uber deactivated me because of a glitch in their system. In my case, the deactivation was Uber’s fault, but drivers get unfairly deactivated every day for all sorts of reasons. Uber kept me out of work for 3 weeks and I fell behind on my car payment. A car payment that I was making to Uber, because I had been leasing a car from them for 18 months. Once my account was reactivated, I worked 12-13 hours a day to catch up on my car payment. It didn’t matter. Uber repossessed my car - taking the thing that I rely on to make a living and something that I was leasing from them. Even though I’ve been reactivated, I live in constant fear that I could be deactivated again for some unknown reason. We shouldn't have to live like this.” -Eleisha R. Every day, Uber and Lyft drivers work under a constant fear of having their accounts deactivated. Deactivation is the equivalent of an immediate firing. Drivers are frequently deactivated with little to no warning, and they are often given no explanation of why they were deactivated, or how they can remedy the situation. The constant threat of termination, in addition to limited opportunity for recourse, means drivers are constantly in a state of fear. Drivers’ stability at work is entirely out of their hands. Instead, their future is decided by the whims of passengers and the companies. It is almost impossible for drivers to advocate for themselves once deactivated, or to fight for reactivation. If you aren't an Uber or Lyft driver, can you imagine working in these conditions? There are numerous things that trigger deactivations including car accidents, background checks, passenger complaints and driver personal safety concerns. Clear policies on why deactivations occur must be developed for each of these issues and more. Drivers need a voice at Uber and Lyft in shaping these policies to better protect both drivers and passengers alike. Drivers deserve a seat at the table. Gig Workers Rising has decided that it is time to take action against Uber and Lyft’s unfair deactivation practices and the devastating impacts they have on drivers. This petition will be delivered in person to Uber and Lyft by drivers. Join us by taking action and signing our petition.
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  • End unpaid internships and unfair compensation practices
    We, as progressives, believe in workers rights. Yet all too often, non profit organizations, political campaigns, for profit companies, and political organizations post jobs that either are unpaid internships or that pay workers as independent contractors instead of employees -- which means the worker is responsible for 100% of the taxes on their compensation and 100% responsible for benefits they would have otherwise received as an employee. Research from Pay Our Interns show that unpaid internships effectively block the point of entry for college students who cannot afford to work for free to gain experience and that people of color and low-income families are significantly underrepresented. And, once the Democratic National Committee started paying their interns, the share of people of color in the program leapt from 18% to 42%. And from my personal experience, I can tell you that in my twenties, I was paid for a number of years as an independent contractor instead of an employee. When I was hired for these positions, I figured I would hired as I had been previously - as an employee. And wow was I shocked when tax day came and I owed 30% of my earnings plus penalties for not filing quarterly estimated taxes. I didn't know taxes were not being withheld -- and I actually had to set up an installment agreement with the IRS. And of course, I didn't have health insurance during those years or any type of benefits. These practices are unfair to workers across the United States. We can't stop employers from being greedy (oh how we've tried!) -- but we can get these progressive job boards to stop posting unpaid internships and to only post jobs which are paid as employees (W2, not 1099), which will cut of the pipeline of applicants to employers who aren't willing to pay their fair share. By cutting off their supply of applicants, I believe we can force non profit organizations and for profit companies to do the right thing, pay their interns a living wage, and to pay their fair share of taxes and benefits.
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  • Tipped Workers Need One Fair Wage in St. Paul
    As the cost of living continues to rise, one in four St. Paul workers currently makes less than $15/hr. The food-service industry is one of the top three employers of low wage workers in the metro area and many of them are tipped workers. We are the people that serve your food, mix your drinks, make your coffee, and clear your tables; we are the backbone of the restaurant industry and we deserve a living wage. Right now, the restaurant industry employs six out of ten of the lowest wage jobs in our state, meanwhile the restaurant and food-service industry continues to grow. We want to keep our industry strong and support the workers that make St. Paul a desirable place to work and dine. We deserve the full minimum wage and our tips! Fair wages not only prevent poverty and wage theft, they also help to protect workers from sexual harassment and discrimination: when workers are more dependent on tips, we're more vulnerable to the biases and, at times, predatory behaviors of customers. On a daily basis, workers in our industry are forced to weigh our dignity against our take-home pay as we face indecent behavior from customers and coworkers. A tip penalty makes this dynamic worse by forcing workers to depend more on tips and less on guaranteed wages for our income. The Minnesota Restaurant Association claims that raising the minimum wage would hurt our industry. That's not true! The restaurant industry is the fastest growing industry in the country and has grown amidst raises to the state-wide minimum wage. They say that workers would lose tips, but tipping is norm in the highest-wage food-service industries in the country. They want to take workers tips to subsidize the cost of running their businesses. We say no! We know that tipped workers, that ALL workers, need a $15 Minimum wage with #1FairWage. Tell the City Council: No carve-outs, No tip-penalty!
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  • Papa John's: Address sexual harassment
    I am a former employee of Papa John's Pizza. I was encouraged, then agreed to be promoted, as AGM last year. I realized through our personal payroll program that I was not getting paid my promised wage. This was brought to my manager’s attention, as well the Area Supervisor’s, eliciting the same response that they will “take care of it.” A few weeks of patiently waiting for a correction and following the chain of command, there was none and I eventually had to call the payroll department myself for retroactive pay. Earlier this year leading up to this from an extremely poor, hostile work environment not only from coworkers, but managers, I was sexually assaulted by my superior while working as an AGM. After being refused from my store manager to Human Resources, I was never offered any paperwork or advice to file my claim for this incident. Following the proper procedure(s) of bringing this to my superior's attention multiple times, I was fired in retaliation and informally transferred to another store location. As a young female, this is a completely different generation that we are bringing into the workforce, speaking up about these issues. For the millions too afraid to truly express themselves, I would like to bring awareness towards this issue to prevent this from becoming a precedent. This is about the laws that we can’t ignore and especially stay silent about. This is not just about me. This is other people. The Department of Human Resources needs to be called out. There are thousands of employees getting hurt from the blind eye of this department not doing anything about these types of claims. They don’t care. Something needs to be done. I am seeking stories from any current/former employees who have experienced discrimination, been fired for retaliation, or anything similar: please come forward, comment below sharing your story, help bring action and create awareness for better employee policy change(s) at Papa John’s Pizza.
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  • Employees First
    Many employees do not like that fact that our travel system is based on FCFS vs. Seniority. In making the changes stated above it reduces the pool of people competing for a seat and also serves as somewhat of a compromise. As the system stands now it is a discouragement to those employees who are not married and have no dependants. This change will enable these employees a chance to travel with their pass user who may also be a underaged grandchild, for example. Employees work for the benefit and therefore should have preference over non employees to use said benefits.
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