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The Nicaraguan Informal Workers Union

Managua           The first day of the Organizers’ Forum dialogue in Nicaragua started inauspiciously, but somehow typically, with confusion. We happened to have arrived in Managua during the celebration of independence from Spain, which is a multi-day affair here with several days of holidays when business has pretty much ground to [...]

Workers Recycling Electronic Wastes are Handling Hazards, We’re Doing Little or Worse

Houston      In India,  ACORN organizes and supports recyclers of all descriptions in the informal economy. The most lucrative livelihoods in this field are the workers handling electronic waste, or e-waste as it’s called, from discarded cell phones, televisions, computers, and the like. The exchange in trade there is in the precious metals, including gold and [...]

New York’s “Poor Door” Could Lead to Mumbai’s Slum Sister Developments

Dallas   So-called voluntary inclusionary zoning in New York City allowing private developers to add more density and receive tax breaks in exchange for constructing a certain number of affordable housing units has led to controversy, as the city tries to make the program mandatory for new developments and as developers exploit loopholes that allow segregation [...]

Harris v. Quinn Part 3: The Problem of Creating Employers for Informal Workers

vendors union meeting in Bangalore

New Orleans     Looking at the history of home-based work both in healthcare and daycare and its roots in domestic work going back to USA colonial times and branching directly out from plantation life at the end of slavery, it really goes without saying that the Court’s decision and creation of [...]

Middle Class Movement Takes Needs than Wishing and Hoping in India

Mumbai     I’ve been coming to India regularly for over a decade now, several times per year for many years and annually more recently.  There have been visible changes, tall apartment blocks growing like weeds, highways under endless construction finally completed, more people with more money more visible, but all of this in a death grip [...]

Visiting the Labor Courts of Bombay

Mumbai   A call from a judge in the labor court of Bombay interrupted our meeting, so I tagged along to get a better sense of the Industrial Court system, which along with a Labour Commissioner and many others managed the labor laws of Mumbai and Maharashtra.   The courts were in East Bandra, not surprisingly [...]