People who struggle with English will have an easier time getting help if they’re injured on the job in Washington state.

That’s because of a federal agreement to settle a complaint targeting Washington’s system for workers’ compensation.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation headquarters in Seattle.
Flickr photo/Jack at Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Jeannie Yandel talks to Brigid Schulte, the author of "Overwhelmed: Work, Love and Play When No One Has the Time," about the Gates Foundation's announcement Thursday that the organization will offer up to 52 weeks parental leave during the first year of a child's birth or adoption.

A Washington state lawmaker who has been trying to make paid family leave available to all workers said a new federal grant will be a big help. 

Oregon voters could see competing minimum-wage initiatives on their 2016 ballot. A group that favors a hike to $13.50 per hour kicked off their signature gathering campaign Monday.

Mary Gates Hall, University of Washington
Flickr Photo/Nam-ho Park (CC BY 2.0)/

Ross Reynolds speaks with Amy Hagopian, an associate professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington, about why she's joined an effort to unionize faculty at the University of Washington.

Red Square, University of Washington campus
Flickr Photo/Curtis Cronn (CC BY NC ND)/

David Hyde speaks with Norm Arkans, associate vice president of media relations and communications at the University of Washington, about why the UW administration has "grave reservations" about an attempt by some of the UW faculty to unionize.

Editor’s note: KUOW is a self-sustaining service of the University of Washington. Arkans is an ex-officio member of the Puget Sound Public Radio Board of Directors. 

The state unemployment rate in Washington and Oregon was falling at a steady pace in recent years. But lately it's stuck.

Teachers and supporters march down First Avenue South on their way to the Seattle Public Schools headquarters south of downtown on Tuesday.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

The strike appears to be over.

Seattle teachers union representatives and school district leaders announced Tuesday night the approval of a tentative agreement.

Teachers and supporters march down First Avenue South on their way to the Seattle Public Schools headquarters south of downtown on Tuesday.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

The Seattle teachers union and the school district said Tuesday they have reached a tentative contract agreement to end a week-long strike.

The district said its 53,000 students could return to class as soon as Thursday if the deal goes through. Union officials were meeting Tuesday afternoon to discuss the proposal.

Teachers strike outside Orca K-12 in Columbia City on Wednesday. Seattle Public Schools remains closed Monday as negotiations continue.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

The Seattle teachers' strike enters its fourth day Monday as teachers continue to negotiate their contract.

Seattle Public Schools issued a counter-proposal that spokeswoman Stacy Howard says would include pay for a longer school day. She did not specify how much pay.

Pasco Teachers Union Faces $2,000 Daily Fines For Strike

Sep 11, 2015

There were gasps in the Franklin County Courthouse Friday as a judge imposed daily fines against the teachers' union in Pasco, Washington.

Listener Sarah Johnson posted this picture from Green Lake Elementary with the message, 'We love our teachers.'
Courtesy of Sarah Johnson

David Hyde speaks with Richelle Dickerson, co-president of West Woodland Parent-Teacher Association, about why she and other parents have been supporting the Seattle teachers strike.

Emily McCann took this Whittier Elementary on the first day of the strike.
Courtesy of Emily McCann

David Hyde talks to Phil Dine, labor expert and author of "State of the Unions," about how Seattle's teacher strike compares to labor trends nationally.

Seattle teachers and supporters walked the picket line in front of Orca K-8 school in Columbia City.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

Seattle teachers' strike is entering day three, and so far the tone has been pretty laid back, with teachers even singing. But when are things going to heat up?

They already are in Pasco, where the teachers' strike is leading to a contempt-of-court hearing Friday.

Employees of federal contractors must be allowed to earn up to seven days of paid sick leave each year, under a new executive order that President Obama signed on Labor Day. The leave includes paid time off for family care.

"This will give about 300,000 working Americans access to paid sick leave for the first time," Obama said after signing the order.