General Motors reached a deal with the United Auto Workers union to reduce its healthcare costs by $1 billions dollars
in order to save GM from bankruptcy.
In November, Australian workers took to the streets to protest agains prime minister John Howard over cuts to workers
Philip Boom, a US citizen living in Romania, has been charged with money laundering. Bloom allegedly paid $630,000 in
kickbacks to American occupation authorities for the reconstructiong jobs in Iraq.
Richard Scrushy, chief executive of HealthSouth, has been indicted on criminal charges of paying $500,000 in bribes
to former Alabama governor Don Siegleman in return for a seat on the state board that makes decisions on hospital constructions.
( Other similar situations reported on page 5)
Terry Collingsworth, executive director of the International Labor Rights Fund has filed a lawsuit against Coca Cola
in New York on behalf of transport workers at the soft drink maker's Turkish bottler, alleging the bottler used teh police
to threaten and beat workers when they tried to unionize.
SOME GOOD STORIES INCLUDE:
Corporate responsibility in modern times
Race to the Bottom - about continued diminishing of labor standards - retailers say they want to be number one for the
customers. But once you've have cut everything to the bone. the only thing you can cut is your workforce and the standards
and benefits your workforce enjoy.
Temporary work force-
70% of short-term workers in the UK would take a permanent job if they could find one.
In Spain, temporary jobs account for 35% of all employment. Companies reportedly hire and fire during the slow periods.
Latin America is increasingly divivded about it northern neighbor-
Many are resisting the new global economy driven by the U.S.A.
As Chinese companies " go global" , some are concerned about Beijing's model of international develpment..... fearing
the money will fail to develop local skills and businesses.
Living up to the anti-poverty rhetoric - big promises but still small returns - in meetings in Hong Kong. The vote
for Trade Justice campaign has so far seen more than 650,000 people registering their concerns about the lopsided trade
rules. Votes can be registered through the Trade Justice Movement at http://www.tjm.org.uk
The most dangerous place to be a trade unionist last year, as it was the year before, was Columbia. The survey documented
99 murders there during 2004 with hundreds of death threats. 14 people were killed in the Philippines when a bulldozer
and armored personnel carriers were used to break through a picket line. China is one of the countries cited as a major cause
for concern. Freedom of association is denied to the country's workforce. Instead, the All China Federation of Trades Unions
is part of the state structure, not a genuine representative of workers. The ICFTU survey alleges that US employers
routinely hire specialist union-busting companies to deter workers from voting for union representation.
Wal-Mart is cited for interfering in a union election by engaging surveilance of the employees' union activities
and use various methods to dilute union support.
New study shows ethical misconduct in the workplace is widespread despite a rise in formal ethics programmes. (page 45)