Jeff Couillard: What if retail workers took a two-week break – starting on Black Friday?

It’s that time of year when retail executives get excited about the kind of record profits they will be raking in from mid-November to the end of the year. Retailers have been pushing out their deals earlier and earlier so consumers have more and more choices to cash in on a “super” deal ahead of […]

Minnesota AFL-CIO calls on Bloomington to drop charges against MOA protesters

Minnesota’s largest labor federation today added its voice to the chorus of community, faith and progressive groups calling on Bloomington City Attorney Sandra Johnson to drop criminal charges against 11 Black Lives Matter members arrested at the Mall of America in December. The Minnesota AFL-CIO, which represents more than 1,000 local unions with 300,000 members […]

Black Friday recap: Strikes, marches lift call for higher wages

Demonstrators in the Twin Cities yesterday echoed an expansive call put forth at Black Friday actions across the country to lift workers and their families out of poverty by guaranteeing livable wages, access to earned sick time and a path to forming a union without fear of retaliation. The target of most Black Friday protests […]

Video: Black Friday march in St. Paul

On the biggest shopping day of the year, nearly 500 people in St. Paul demonstrated outside the Midway Walmart, demanding that the retailer pay its associates living wages and stop retaliating against workers organizing for change. Four striking Walmart workers from Apple Valley led a march from Walmart to a nearby McDonald’s, where activists called […]

Low-wage workers announce Black Friday Week of Action

As the holiday shopping season shifts into high gear, workers who stock Walmart’s shelves, serve McDonald’s hamburgers and clean big-box stores are planning a week of action in the Twin Cities to draw attention to the low wages and poor conditions plaguing their industries. The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday is the highest-profile shopping day […]

Call to end poverty wages rings out from Black Friday protests in Twin Cities

Hundreds of people flocked to the Midway Walmart in St. Paul today, but it wasn’t deep discounts or door-buster deals they wanted. It was justice for workers who make the holiday season happen. Black Friday protests in the Twin Cities took on a renewed vigor this year, as activists from labor, faith and community groups […]

Bouyed by prayers, workers return to Brooklyn Center Walmart after one-day strike

One day after exercising her legally protected right to strike, April Williams walked back into the Brooklyn Center Walmart for her scheduled shift this morning. But Williams did not take that walk alone. In the parking lot outside the store, about 25 people, including eight clergy members, huddled around Williams, praying for a safe return […]

Walmart workers go on strike in Brooklyn Center, kick off week of action for better wages

The nationwide wave of Walmart strikes hit Minnesota this morning, when three women who work at the Brooklyn Center store informed management they were going on an unfair-labor-practices strike. U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison and Rev. Doug Mork of nearby Cross of Glory Lutheran Church accompanied the workers into the store, and dozens of supporters from […]

Labor Board: Walmart violated workers’ rights

The National Labor Relations Board announced Nov. 18 its intent to prosecute the nation’s largest retailer, Walmart, for violating labor law in dealings with employees in 14 states, including Minnesota. The charges come after an investigation of employees’ charges that Walmart threatened, disciplined or even fired them for participating in legally protected protests and organizing […]

Study finds taxpayers subsidize big-box stores at cost of $150 million per year in Minnesota

Retail workers and activists who join the protest outside Walmart in St. Paul on Black Friday will be armed with a scathing new report shedding light on the public cost of poverty-level wages paid by Walmart, Target and other big-box department stores. “At What Cost,” released Nov. 12 by the union-backed Minnesotans for a Fair […]