California officially puts the dying UFW on life support

The United Farm Workers is dying, and everybody knows it. Its aging leadership – Chavez family members and their cronies – have run the union for 20, 30, even more than 40 years. They’ve run the UFW right into the ground. The UFW is under a court order to pay as much as $2 million to its own employees whom it had cheated. Paid membership has collapsed more than 90 percent. Today, the UFW represents less than 1 percent of…

Continue reading

Supreme Court hands us a forced contract setback – but still lets us de-certify UFW

The California Supreme Court didn’t surprise anyone when it overturned a lower court’s ruling that state agencies cannot coerce farmworkers into United Farm Workers contracts. But the justices did uphold the right of workers to choose whether or not they wanted UFW representation. “We anticipated that the Supreme Court would side with the state’s political leaders to force contracts on us to benefit the politically-connected UFW,” said Pick Justice leader Silvia Lopez. Pleasant surprise – We can still de-certify the…

Continue reading

New York Times looks at ‘collapse’ of California’s organized farmworker movement

California’s organized farm worker movement is in such a state of collapse that the New York Times has started to pay attention. The New York Times doesn’t blame the growers. In a remarkable article, it lays blame squarely on the United Farm Workers (UFW) union and its government protector, the Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB). The former ALRB chief, in turn, blames undocumented workers, who don’t want to organize in unions. To the obvious dismay of ALRB Chairman William Gould, who…

Continue reading

Forced labor: Gould confirmed what we knew about his agenda

When he quit last week, ALRB Chairman William Gould revealed a lot of his vision for the troubled state agency. He said, in essence, that the ALRB should force labor unions on farmworkers. In his resignation letter to Governor Jerry Brown, Gould confirmed what we suspected all along: He wanted ALRB to be a government unionization enforcer. Gould made it clear that he wanted ALRB to be a unionization tool, and not an impartial farmworker advocate between unions and employers.…

Continue reading