UFW cheated workers – so each UFW member must pay $233

Every dues-paying member of the UFW is paying $233 of their dues money to reimburse UFW workers who the union leadership cheated. A court settlement between the UFW and its employees – who were abused, cheated, and retaliated against for trying to start their own union – means that the $1,300,000 settlement must be paid with dues from the UFW’s remaining dues-paying members. The UFW has only 5,580 dues-paying members left. That means that each dues-paying member must pay $233…

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Without admitting it cheated its own workers, UFW settles $1.3 million case

The UFW has agreed to pay $1.3 million to settle a case filed by its own workers. The union is not admitting that it cheated it workers, as the employees alleged. The settlement, which is not final, avoids paying a potential $2 million court judgment. The step is important because it shows that the iconic UFW can no longer act with impunity. It also reveals that the UFW leadership has been so irresponsible with its stewardship of members’ dues, that…

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UFW says it ‘vehemently’ opposes Pick Justice leader to appear before Supreme Court

The United Farm Workers “vehemently” opposes Pick Justice leader Silvia Lopez to make an opening argument before the California Supreme Court. A major constitutional issue is at stake at the September 5 hearing. The state and the UFW seek to force farmworkers to submit to a UFW contract that would cut their take-home pay and deny them the right to have a say in the contract. “The UFW vehemently opposes Lopez’s request” to be given time to state her case…

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UFW wants to protect some workers from deportation, but not if they oppose the union

The UFW takes two positions on foreign workers in the US under H2-A agricultural labor visas. Don’t let them get fired, because under the H2-A seasonal worker visa system, they will be deported. Fire any H2-A workers who oppose the UFW (and let them get deported). Here’s the latest: UFW Vice President Erik Nicholson says foreign farmworkers on H2-A visas are vulnerable to abuses, because if they complain about conditions, they risk getting fired, and if they get fired, they…

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Abused mushroom workers demand new UFW leadership

Mushroom workers, feeling abused by their employer and the UFW, demand new leadership at the flailing union. “Some 300 workers went on strike against the UFW and Monterey Mushroom” on May 25, “demanding a pay raise, just treatment from their managers, and new leadership in the UFW,” KION-TV reported. This is the first time in memory that UFW members have protested in large numbers to demand an end to the UFW’s ineffective – and what some allege to be morally corrupt…

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300 mushroom workers protest UFW; union in cahoots to slash wages

Hundreds of mushroom workers are rising up against the UFW, accusing the union of being in cahoots with the employer to slash workers’ wages. Edith Ruiz, a leader of 300 Monterey Mushrooms protesters, says that the UFW and the company want to cut the workers’ salaries almost in half – to minimum wage – and that the UFW is trying to convince the workers to go along. “We are demonstrating because they what to lower our salaries,” Ruiz told Stephanie…

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Brown axes Future Farmers & spends $10 million to attack farmworkers who don’t support him

Governor Jerry Brown used to stand up for the little guy. Now he’s de-funding important an entrepreneurial program to help kids become farmers, while spending $10 million on an agency that has put 2,500 Central Valley farmworkers out of work. All the while, Brown is siding with special interests like the UFW, which represents less than 1% of California farmworkers but rakes in a lot of guilt-and-nostalgia money for his political machine. Future Farmers of America (FFA) helps 469 California…

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Court slaps another $770,000 judgment on UFW

A real California judge slapped the UFW with another $770,000 judgment, raising the total levied against the floundering union to $2 million. Monterey County Superior Court Judge Thomas Wills ordered the UFW to pay a law firm $770,000 in legal fees after finding the UFW guilty of defrauding its own workers. Earlier, the court ordered UFW to pay $1.2 million in damages to the UFW’s former employees whom it had cheated. In his ruling, Judge Wills said, “the Court has…

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Court slaps $1.2 million judgment on UFW for cheating its employees

The UFW has cheated is own employees of their wages, and must pay them $885,000 in back pay, a Monterey County court has found. With penalties added, the UFW will be out $1.2 million. Reporting the judgment, the Los Angeles Times noted the irony. “The union founded on the principle of protecting wage abuses will have to shell out” the money because it abused its own workers, the Times reported. The UFW fired the main plaintiff, Francisco Cerritos, because he…

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Activist admits Latinos have no national spokesperson

A Latino Lives Matter activist admits that nobody acts as a voice for Latinos at the national level. This doesn’t surprise us, of course, because there is no credible spokesman in the state of California. The United Farm Workers (UFW) claims to represent working Latinos, but it doesn’t. UFW’s total membership equals only 1% of California farmworkers, so for the union to claim to represent farmworkers is to stretch the truth. Writing in the Los Angeles Daily News, activist Randy…

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UFW sexism and homophobia drove lesbian organizer out of union

Many union organizers have objected to the United Farm Workers’ old-boy network that they say marginalizes women, indigenous people, and political progressives. They’ve kept their complaints quiet for fear of upsetting the political establishment in Sacramento. Those politicians, led by Senator Kevin de Leon and Governor Jerry Brown, have pretended not to notice the UFW’s backwardness. But some organizers have been vocal. A lesbian Indigenous former UFW organizer writes that she experienced an atmosphere of sexism, discrimination, and homophobia among…

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UFW is the new One Percent

The UFW has organized only 1 percent of farmworkers in California and is deficient in many ways. Yet it’s moving its operations offshore to Mexico and Central America to organize cheap labor for big business like Costco. Farmworkers are being sold out. What about the other 99 percent? With its membership just a fraction of what it was and almost no organizing in California fields, the United Farm Workers has begun moving its operations offshore to provide its partner Costco…

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UFW silent as robot readies to replace farmworkers

The first fruit-picking prototype robot proves that it is practical to harvest apples by machine. This video of the prototype robot has been on YouTube for five months – but the UFW hasn’t said a word. Why has the UFW been silent about a technological breakthrough that promises dramatic changes in the livelihoods of farmworkers? Is the UFW simply content to keep its members down, as the most humble people in the labor force, while it takes 3 percent of their salary…

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UFW calls $7.50 a day a ‘dignified wage’

UFW President Arturo Rodriguez is bragging that his union will raise farmworkers’ salaries by a whopping 50 percent in 5 years. But not in California. Rodriguez and UFW Vice President Erik Nicholson were in Nicaragua this week to push for the 50 percent raise for local farmworkers in the mountains of Matagalpa. A fifty percent raise sounds like a lot. But in Nicaragua, it’s very little, which is why the UFW didn’t attach a dollar figure to its work the…

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