labor

Washington state's above-average unemployment rate hasn't budged since last December. For July, the state’s Department of Employment Security Wednesday again pegged it at 5.8 percent.

Rebecca Crimmins, 61, spent two years trying to find a job. During that time, her mother died and she got cancer. She must continue working to pay off her medical bills.
KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

Eight years have passed since the Great Recession. It almost seems like a distant event. But older workers haven’t completely recovered despite signs of boom times. 

Bill Radke speaks with Dylan Orr, director of Seattle's Office of Labor Standards, about the new secure scheduling rules proposed by the city and what they would mean for local businesses and workers. 

The road that winds around Sea-Tac Airport.
Flickr Photo/Ping Li (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) http://bit.ly/2aPcgPp

Last month, the Port of Seattle chose a new taxi company to serve Sea-Tac Airport. East Side For Hire won the exclusive contract.

The change happened quietly in the middle of last month. But the Port Commission meeting yesterday was anything but quiet.


Uber provided drivers like Suzy Harrison with shirts that say, 'I Drive, I Vote.'
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Seattle’s attempt to offer collective bargaining to the city’s Uber and Lyft drivers is facing delays.

The ordinance allowing those drivers to unionize was scheduled to take effect in September. But city officials say they aren’t ready to implement it yet. And they still need to settle a divisive issue: which drivers will get to vote on the union when the time comes.    


Local Wonder bill radke
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Chris P. works full-time for Uber in Seattle, including long shifts on the weekends. The rest of the week, he’s a stay-at-home dad. He likes the job, but he hopes a union could get him more stability. 

Stress has long been shown to increase the risk of heart disease, obesity, diabetes and a number of mental health problems.

REI's famous flagship store in downtown Seattle.
Flickr Photo/brewbooks (CC BY SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/49tVma

REI workers are demanding better schedules and higher wages.

Monday night, employees from the outdoor equipment company shared their concerns publicly in a forum at Seattle's City Hall. City Councilmember Kshama Sawant helped organize the event.

A majority of working adults say they still go to work when they have a cold or the flu. There are some jobs where doing that can have a big effect on health.

At least half of people who work in very public places, like hospitals and restaurants, report going to work when they have a cold or the flu. Those were among the findings of a poll conducted by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

What Seattle techies make, compared to the national average. The rest of us are in here somewhere too.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Seattle-area computer programmers are the highest-paid in the nation. That's according to new data from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, released today.

Men between the ages of 25 and 54 are considered to be in their prime working years. But in the United States, the share of prime-age men who are neither working nor looking for work has doubled since the 1970s. Roughly one in six prime-age men in the U.S. are either unemployed or out of the workforce altogether.

University of Washington faculty and students are protesting administrators' decision to cut 25 teaching assistant positions in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Millions more American workers will soon be eligible for overtime pay under a rule being finalized Wednesday by the Labor Department.

The rule says anyone who makes less than $47,476 per year must receive time-and-a-half pay for hours worked beyond 40 hours a week. That's roughly double the current threshold of $23,660.

The measure is one of the most sweeping moves the Obama administration has made so far in its efforts to boost slow-growing incomes. But it's sure to face opposition from some business owners.

In recent years, there's been a no-tipping movement within the restaurant industry.

The idea has been to rectify a basic pay unfairness to even out the pay between tipped and untipped employees. Dishwashers and cooks at the back of the house don't earn as much money as waiters because they don't get tips.

So, do away with tipping, raise menu prices a little bit, and pay everyone a higher wage.

It's been a good week for employees of Chobani. They learned that they could eventually own about 10 percent of the rapidly expanding Greek yogurt company. That could potentially make millionaires of some workers, if the privately held company is sold or goes public.

It's a grand gesture, and reflects a rising trend in employee ownership.

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