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The Industrial Worker (IWW)

Meet a Union Staffer: Maxim Baru, Communications Officer

This interview is part of an ongoing series focusing on IWW officers, staff members and others. Maxim Baru is the communications officer for the North American Regional Administration of the Industrial Workers of the World. Baru also previously served on the IWW’s Organizing Department Board, as its chair. Industrial Worker recently spoke with him…

Workers at Dill Pickle Food Co-op Accuse Boss of Mismanagement

Recent events at the Dill Pickle Food Co-op in Chicago illustrate what workers describe as a pattern of mismanagement by general manager I’Talia McCarthy. In March, two union stewards — individuals elected by workers to deal with management — quit in response to the store’s lax COVID-19 safety policy, which allows customers to shop mask-less…

IWW Presents Fight Like Hell: Online Q&A with Kim Kelly and Peter Cole

The Industrial Workers of the World presents Kim Kelly, author of Fight Like Hell: The Untold History of American Labor, in conversation with Peter Cole, professor of history at Western Illinois University, on Monday, May 16 at 8 PM Eastern. Moderated by Maxim Baru, communications officer of the IWW. RSVP for the event and order your copy of Fight…

IWW Launches New Organizing Program to Train Workers

As employers continue to use the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic to amass record profits, more and more workers are reaching out to labor unions for assistance with organizing their workplaces. For the Industrial Workers of the World, a labor union that trains workers to be organizers, this has meant finding new ways to build capacity for assisting workers…

IWOC-Milwaukee Hosts Online Discussion on Mental Illness and Imprisonment

Lack of support for mental health and insufficient treatment opportunities for the incarcerated people who need them is a known problem in Wisconsin and across the United States. According to a 2019 report by Edward Lyon in Prison Legal News: “In Wisconsin, state prison officials estimated in their budget request for 2019-21 that 41 percent of the…

Nitricity Workers Launch Rare Union Drive at Start-up

The fight for unionization continues at Nitricity, a San Francisco-based start-up company that produces fertilizer. A union election held on April 6 split 5-5 between supporters and opponents, with a single, currently uncounted vote remaining. A variety of unsafe working conditions and lack of health insurance initially led the workers of Nitricity…

Gender Equity Committee Helps IWW Members Resolve Conflict Through Mediation

Maria Smith was frustrated and angry. Communication within her Industrial Workers of the World branch had broken down after the resignation of its secretary-treasurer, and Smith felt her voice wasn’t being heard. But after a close examination of the problem, she applied for mediation with a fellow branch member through the IWW’s Gender Equity Committee…

Public Defenders in Fredericksburg Unionize with IWW, Win Raises

In early March, public defenders at the Fredericksburg office of the Virginia Indigent Defense Commission announced their unionization with the Fredericksburg branch of the Industrial Workers of the World. Within weeks of their announcement, the workers were given a raise of $7,000 a year. The IWW’s Public Workers for Indigent Defense seek to advocate…

Workers at Holler Health Justice Seek Self-Management

Workers at Holler Health Justice began meeting with the West Virginia branch of the Industrial Workers of the World last year to draft their first union contract. The contract, which starts wages at $20 an hour, with 15-hour work weeks, greater time off and worker self-management, is now with the board of the nonprofit abortion support provider for…

Call to Safety Workers Anticipate Union Raise

Workers at Call to Safety, a Portland, Oregon-based crisis hotline unionized with the Industrial Workers of the World, have recently been pushing for an annual cost of living wage increase and prospects seem promising, especially in light of recent negotiations with management. Call to Safety’s financial committee and executive director have already…

IWW Freelance Journalists Union Offers Tool to Curb Story Theft

The Industrial Workers of the World’s Freelance Journalists Union is taking steps to combat the theft of freelancers’ intellectual property. The IWW FJU has set up a “Pitch Record Keeper” to help freelance journalists produce third-party verification of story ideas they submit to publications. This way, freelancers will have an independent record…

IWW Radio Show Spotlights Labor Struggles

“The working class and the employing class have nothing in common.” So begins episode one of Wob Radio Hour, with a reading of the preamble to Constitution of the Industrial Workers of the World. Every month, a group of IWW members gather around Marilyn Kimmerling’s dining table in Tacoma, Washington, to speak and sing in solidarity — and to…

Alamo Drafthouse Workers Unionize with IWW

The Industrial Workers of the World’s Drafthouse United are still waiting for union recognition from management at Alamo Drafthouse, after announcing on February 14 that they intend to unionize the South Lamar movie theater in Austin, Texas. Despite a dismissive public response from management, many Austin residents have expressed their support over…

Union Advocates for Socialist Rifle Association Workers, Volunteers and Members

Members of the Industrial Workers of the World’s Socialist Rifle Association Workers United are experiencing increased productivity and better working conditions less than a year after forming their union. Since workers at the Socialist Rifle Association organized as the Socialist Rifle Association Workers United with the IWW, they are seeing positive…

Voodoo Doughnut Workers Still Seeking Safe Working Conditions

March of 2022 marks the two-year anniversary of workers at Voodoo Doughnut in Portland unionizing with the Industrial Workers of the World’s Doughnut Workers United. Looking back, Voodoo Doughnut worker and DWU organizer Samantha Bryce recognizes the union’s victories, but also its determination to further improve working conditions. When DWU was…

A People’s Guide to Capitalism: An Interview with Hadas Thier

Hadas Thier’s new introduction to Marxist economics, A People’s Guide to Capitalism, has been hailed as “an important primer for generations of activists.” Industrial Worker recently spoke with Thier about the book, her motivations for writing it and what she hopes working-class readers will take away from it. The interview below has been edited…

Dill Pickle Co-op Workers Walk Out Over Unsafe Conditions

Last month, workers at the Dill Pickle Food Co-op in Chicago walked out over unsafe working conditions related to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Workers at the grocery store are organized as the Dill Pickle Worker’s Union with the Industrial Workers of the World. Despite the recent surge in COVID infections nationwide due to the omicron variant, management…

IWW Launches Strike Fund

Despite businesses across the continent finding themselves unable to fill positions at pre-COVID wages or conditions, workers continue to face stagnating and often regressive compensation, in light of the rising cost of living and the ongoing pandemic. With workers unable to push through many fundamental changes within their workplaces, the right to…

Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee Assists the Incarcerated with Legal Appeals, Grievances

Case readers with the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee are volunteers who assist incarcerated members of the Industrial Workers of the World with filing legal appeals and grievances against their prisons’ administrators. While case readers do not provide legal services per se, they do connect incarcerated people with information and resources…

Working Class History Everyday Acts of Resistance & Rebellion: An Interview with John Lasdun

For the seasoned and principled organizers who have been a fixture in the movement or the teetering leftist who has only recently made their foray into politics, Working Class History: Everyday Acts of Resistance & Rebellion is a must-read. In contrast to other review texts, Working Class History explores the rich and storied past of class struggle…

The Big Red Song Book: An Interview with David Roediger

Unique to the Industrial Workers of the World from its beginnings have been the songs Wobblies sang on shop floors and strike lines, in jails and hobo jungles. Wobblies wrote their own words using the tunes of well-known hymns, anthems, parlor songs and vaudeville singalongs. These were first printed in the Little Red Songbook of 1909 and then in many…

Labor Law for the Rank & Filer: An Interview with Staughton Lynd

Labor Law for the Rank & Filer by Staughton Lynd and Daniel Gross, featuring black-and-white photographs of workers reading on top and workers pressing against a closed glass door on the bottom Authors Staughton Lynd and Daniel Gross wrote Labor Law for the Rank & Filer: Building Solidarity While Staying Clear of the Law to help workers interested in…

Wobblies of the World: An Interview with Peter Cole

The IWW is sometimes thought of as an American organization since it was founded in Chicago in 1905 and saw its greatest activity in the United States. That assumption is challenged in “Wobblies of the World: A Global History of the IWW,” a collection of essays from 20 scholars first published in 2017 and edited by Peter Cole, David Struthers and…

Moe’s Books Workers Ratify First Contract

On November 22, 2021 workers at Berkeley, CA’s iconic Moe’s Books voted to ratify their first union contract after reaching a Tentative Agreement with management the previous week. Since its founding in early 2021, the Industrial Workers of the World Moe’s Books Union has continuously pushed for better working conditions, pay, and benefits. The…

Union at Socialist Rifle Association Gives Staff, Volunteers Seat at the Table

As of March 13th, 2021 the Socialist Rifle Association Workers United (SRAWU) have been affiliated with the Industrial Workers of the World. The SRAWU is a union for the  paid staff and volunteers of the Socialist Rifle Association (SRA), a US-based firearms organization that aims to provide working class people the information they need to be effectively…


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