Ground Control

BossFeed Briefing for June 19, 2017. Today is Juneteenth, which commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. This past Saturday served as two week’s notice of the effective date of Seattle’s landmark secure scheduling law, which will provide two week's notice of work schedules and other new rights for people who work for large coffee, food, and retail chains. And all last week and into this week, various companies have been publicly fighting for contracts that allow them to operate at Sea-Tac Airport, where they'll have to pay workers more than $15/hour. 


Three things to know this week:

Washington’s job market is booming, unemployment is at record-low levels, business growth is accelerating, and the lobby group for hotel and restaurant chains says the biggest problem in the industry is finding enough staff even at $15 or more an hour. That’s quite a bit different from what the sky-is-falling crew predicted would happen if we raised wages.

About half of the billions of dollars raised on GoFundMe are for personal medical expenses. The company’s owners may be among the vanishingly small number of people who would benefit from the healthcare repeal bill moving through Congress.

A lawsuit has been filed charging that parental leave policies which exclude fathers may violate gender discrimination laws. Many corporate leave policies implicitly or explicitly presume that birth mothers are the only possible primary caretakers of new children.


Two things to ask:

Got any better ideas? On Thursday, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos tweeted to ask for suggestions on how to spend some money to make things better for people. The next day, his company announced a $13.7 billion all-cash billion purchase of Whole Foods. 

Why don’t they ever learn? Uber board member David Bonderman had to resign his position after publicly interrupting a woman to make a sexist comment during a meeting about sexism & harassment at the company. Bonderman runs a private equity firm with a substantial ownership stake in Uber.


And one thing that’s worth a closer look:

Workers make history in space, too, and in fact many of today’s basic working conditions for astronauts only came about because of a one-day strike in the 1970s, explains Samir Chopra in Open Magazine. The three-person crew of Skylab had repeatedly asked for a break from their schedule of 84 consecutive closely-monitored 16-hour workdays, but didn't get anywhere until they took action by shutting off all communications with Mission Control for a day and just relaxing. When they came back online to negotiate, they won dramatic improvements that have benefited future astronauts through today, but none of the strikers were allowed to return to space again.


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