Change to Win Helps Uphold Immigrant Workers’ Rights

Change to Win Helps Uphold Immigrant Workers’ Rights

Workers Unlawfully Disciplined in Connection With Immigration Actions Win Reinstatement, Back Pay


Washington, DC–(HISPANIC PR WIRE – US Newswire)–August 9, 2006–Workers at eight companies have returned to work as the result of settlements reached with their employers, many including back pay, after they were unlawfully fired for participating in immigration demonstrations during April and May of this year. The settlements were the result of unfair labor practice (ULP) charges filed by Change to Win with the National Labor Relations Board.

Federal labor law guarantees workers the right to engage in “protected concerted activity.” The charges filed by CtW asserted that workers who left work to participate in the immigration actions were engaged in legally protected concerted activity. CtW lawyers filed briefs in regional offices throughout the country arguing that the fundamental issue underlying the immigration rallies, protests and demonstrations was protecting the employment status of immigrant workers. The NLRB agreed and notified employers that formal complaints would issue unless the employers settled the charges.

“When workers stand up for their rights, Change to Win will stand side by side with them,” said Anna Burger, Chair of Change to Win. “We are proud to have supported these workers in reaching just settlements, and will continue our efforts to protect the rights of other workers who are still fighting for those rights.”

Following is a list of companies that have reached settlements with their employees. An additional 21 cases are still being investigated affecting numerous other workers. CtW continues to file additional charges as problems arise.

1. Universal Form Clamp, Bellwood, IL. Approximately 30 workers reinstated.

2. Cobra Metal Works, Elgin, IL. Workers achieved a settlement with the assistance of local representatives and groups.

3. Wolverine Packing, Detroit, MI. Workers returned to work with back pay.

4. Laitala Painting Co., Woodinville, WA. Workers returned to work.

5. Delta Services, Inc., Indianapolis, IN. Workers reinstated.

6. Leef Service, Minneapolis, MN. Settlement was achieved in cooperation with the representative UNITE HERE in Chicago.

7. Octopus Car Wash, Madison, WI. Terminations withdrawn.

8. Taylor Recycling, Des Moines, IA. Seven employees offer reinstatement and the company agreed to pay $13,000 in back pay.

About Change to Win

Change to Win was founded in September 2005 by seven unions representing 6 million workers devoted to building a movement of working people with the power to provide workers a paycheck that supports a family, affordable health care, a secure retirement and dignity on the job. The seven affiliated unions are: Service Employees International Union, UNITE HERE, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Laborers’ International Union of North America, United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America and United Farm Workers of America.

Change to Win Helps Uphold Immigrant Workers’ Rights