Browse Cases

Showing 1-25 of 30 results

Workers at Harvard University-owned DoubleTree Hotel win fight for unionization, 2013-2015

Country
United States
Time period
11 March, 2013 to 7 April, 2015
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Total points
10 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Emma Walker 29/05/2019

On  11 March 2013, SLAM and 70 percent of the approximately 112 nonmanagerial workers at the DoubleTree (housekeepers, banquet servers, front desk agents, van drivers, and Scullers Jazz Club employees) filed a petition stating their desire to be able to decide without the influence of hotel management whether or not to join Unite Here, which already represented Harvard’s dining hall employees.

Sex workers strike for rights in El Alto, Bolivia

Country
Bolivia
Time period
17 October, 2007 to 27 October, 2007
Classification
Change
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
3.5 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Erica Janko 28/04/2015

On 14 October 2007, citizens of El Alto, Bolivia demanded that all bars and brothels facilitating sex work be located at least 3,200 feet away from schools, because they believed that the establishments were facilitating crime in the area. They then began a three-day rampage of the bars and brothels in the impoverished red-lights district of El Alto. These El Alto citizens, primarily parents and students, burned or destroyed at least 50 brothels, burned sex workers’ belongings, and beat sex workers.

Bangladeshi Garment Workers Fight for their Wages, 2014

Country
Bangladesh
Time period
July 9th, 2014 to October 15th, 2014
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
4.5 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Jasmine Rashid 2/28/15

Tuba Group factory workers in Dhaka, Bangladesh, stood up against
exploitation in the summer of 2014. The company, in which five factories
made products for businesses like Walmart and H&M, had become
notorious in recent years for some of the lowest employee wages in the
world (about US $38 a month) and the 2012 “Tarzeen factory fire” that
killed 112 workers. Since February of 2014, Delwar Hossain, the owner of
the group, had been in jail for the workplace negligence that lead to
the tragedy. However, workers continued to face unfair treatment.

Bangladesh factory workers protest for higher wages and better working conditions, 2013

Country
Bangladesh
Time period
November, 2012 to December, 2013
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
5.5 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Meghan Kelly, 21/11/2015 and Lorielyn Cadiz, 22/11/2013

Bangladesh, located to the east of India, is a leading global garment manufacturer, producing clothing for such American companies as Gap, Walmart, and J.C. Penney. The Ready Made Garment (RMG) industry makes up 80% of the country’s exports and employs about 4 million Bangladeshis, 80% of whom are women. A survey published by the Japan External Trade Organization in December 2013 reported that Bangladesh garment workers earn nearly the lowest monthly wage in the world, second only to Myanmar.

Israeli single mothers campaign against welfare cuts, 2003

Country
Israel
Time period
2 July, 2003 to August, 2003
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
3 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Jessica Seigel, 30/03/2013

On 29 June 2003, the Israeli Ministry of Finance amended the Hok HaHasderim, a bill passed in 1985 in order to combat existing hyperinflation and aid in the creation and development of an austerity program. The late June amendment enormously decreased single mothers’ welfare allowances. Single mothers across the nation, who were already struggling to make ends meet, were both hurt and angered by the amendment. On 2 July 2003, one such woman, a 43-year-old single mother named Vicky Knafo, marched two-hundred and fifty kilometers from her home in Mitzpe Ramon to Jerusalem.

Icelanders lead campaign against the sale of a national geothermal company, 2011

Country
Iceland
Time period
18 July, 2010 to 31 January, 2011
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Environment
Total points
4 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
John Pontillo, 30/03/2013

On 18 July 2010, Icelandic pop-singer and cultural icon Bjork called for Iceland’s Parliament to review the sale of Iceland’s geo-thermal company HS Orka to Vancouver-based company Magma Energy Corporation in order to consider the environmental and political implications of such a sale. Bjork argued that the sale of Iceland’s natural resources, like geo-thermal energy, should be decisions made by all Icelanders, and not just those affiliated with the company.

Brazilian women advance conditions for rural workers (Margaridas' march), 2000

Country
Brazil
Time period
16 August, 2000 to 18 August, 2000
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Jessica Seigel, 16/03/2013

In Brazil in
2000, the Margaridas, or Daisies, formed in honor of Margarida Maria Alves, a
union leader renowned for surmounting the embedded cultural stereotypes and
obstacles for women, especially those working in rural areas. Alves
became the president of the Rural Worker’s Union in her town, but was
reportedly assassinated in 1983, at the age of 50, because of her advocacy for
those working in rural or forested areas. 
After her death, she became a feminist icon in the fight for equality

Ford female employees win strike for equal pay, Dagenham, England, 1968

Country
England
Time period
7 June, 1968 to 29 June, 1968
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Jessica Seigel, 15/03/2013

In Dagenham, East London, 54,813 men, and only 187 women worked in Ford’s flagship factory. The women there were classified as “unskilled workers,” though male employees performing the same or similar jobs were classified as “skilled workers.” As a result the men were on a higher pay scale than the women. Female employees of the factory were deeply upset when they learned this fact, and even more enraged when they discovered that teenage boy floor-sweepers were paid higher wages than they were.

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory women strike, win better wages and hours, New York, 1909

Country
United States
Time period
late Sept, 1909 to Feb, 1910
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
8 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Angie Boehm, 09/03/2013

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory is best known for the unique fashion blouse they produced and the horrific fire that killed 146 workers, women who might have lived if the owners had been forced to ensure safety standards in the factory. Historically, the 1911 tragedy defined the Triangle workers as the victims of disaster. 

Philadelphians campaign against welfare cuts, United States, 1996-1997

Country
United States
Time period
25 August, 1996 to 1 July, 1997
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Democracy
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
4 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Nick Palazzolo 02/03/2013

On 16 May 1996, Governor Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania signed Senate Bill 1441 into law. This bill contained a series of welfare reforms, including cuts to medical assistance, a requirement that childless people between ages 21 and 58 work 100 hours a month to receive medical assistance benefits, and a condition that anyone making more than $5100 a year did not qualify for medical assistance. When implemented this legislation would cut 250,000 people off of medical assistance.

Nigerian Ekpan women protest against oil company policies, 1986

Country
Nigeria
Time period
25 August, 1986 to 8 September, 1986
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
National/Ethnic Identity
Total points
6 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Yein Pyo, 09/12/2012

At 5 a.m. on Monday, 25 August 1986, a group of 10,000 Ekpan women from the Uvwie clan within Ethiope Local Government Area surrounded the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Petrochemicals Plant, and the Pipelines and Products Marketing Pumpstation. The demonstrating women chanted war songs and displayed banners and posters on which they wrote their grievances, such as, “Give us Social Amenities,” “Review all forms of employment within the Petrochemical,” and “Our sons, daughters and husbands are qualified for key posts within the Petrochemical.”

Ogharefe women protest against Pan Ocean oil industry, 1984

Country
Nigeria
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Environment
Human Rights
National/Ethnic Identity
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Yein Pyo, 02/12/2012

The Ogharefe people of Nigeria suffered from the effects of oil pollution and oil exploration. The Ogharefe community was afflicted with a number of health issues, ranging from skin rashes to stomach ailments, from the gas flares and release of "oil production water." Additional damage from oil production included heavy metals in the water, the eroding of iron roofs due to corrosive ash from gash flares, and the decline of productive fishing ponds and farming land.

Kansas miners strike and women march for industrial freedom, 1921-22

Country
United States
Time period
September, 1921 to January, 1922
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Human Rights
Economic Justice
Total points
10 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Benjamin W. Goossen, 20/11/2012

In the early twentieth century, Kansas was the third largest coal producing state in the United States, with more than 8,000 unionized miners concentrated in the two southwestern counties of Crawford and Cherokee. In January 1920, the Kansas legislature had established a board of compulsory arbitration, known as the Kansas Industrial Court, which banned strikes against unfair labor practices and working conditions.

Lagos market women campaign to remove income tax, Nigeria, 1940-1941

Country
Nigeria
Time period
16 December, 1940 to 12 January, 1941
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
National/Ethnic Identity
Total points
5 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Lekey Leidecker, 11/11/2012

Women market workers in Lagos, an area in western Nigeria, in the 1920s were organized into a powerful group known as the Lagos Market Women Association (LMWA). In 1932, a rumor emerged that the British colonial government was going to begin taxing Lagosian women, which had never been done before, although taxes for men had been introduced in 1927 (in spite of coordinated resistance by different groups). The market women felt that a tax was unfair and that they were already struggling to make a living.

Costa Rican women teachers defend schools, help bring down a dictator, 1919

Country
Costa Rica
Time period
11 June, 1919 to 13 June, 1919
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Democracy
Economic Justice
Total points
7 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Susana Medeiros, 02/10/2012

In 1917, the government of Alfredo Gonzalez Flores was overthrown in a coup d'état, wherein Minister of War Federico Tinoco seized power and appointed his brother, Jose Joaquin Tinoco, the new Minister of War. During this time the Tinoco regime severely curtailed civil liberties and the freedom of the press and assembly.

Milwaukee sales clerks strike for wage increases, 1934

Country
United States
Time period
30 November, 1934 to 11 January, 1935
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Total points
5 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Jonathan White, 24/01/2013

In 1934 it had been a successful year for strikes in Milwaukee, which emboldened retail clerks at Sears, Roebuck and Company, and the Boston Store to demand higher wages. At the time most clerks earned below $14 a week, which they called “starvation wages.”

Korean women workers win campaign against unjust working conditions in rail system, 2006-2008

Country
South Korea
Time period
February, 2006 to October, 2008
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
7 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Koren Kwag, 12/04/2011

 

The
struggle waged by the KTX Crew Workers’ Branch Union signifies the longest
workers’ rights campaign mobilized by women throughout Korean history. For over
500 days, participants implemented a variety of nonviolent tactics, including
public rallies, marches, sit-ins, tent protests, building occupation, hunger
strikes, classroom lectures, and community outreach efforts.

Egyptian textile workers strike for bonuses and to protest corruption, 2006

Country
Egypt
Time period
5 December, 2006 to 10 December, 2006
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Elliana Bisgaard-Church, 06/11/2011

On March 3, 2006, Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmad Nazif announced that all public-sector manufacturing workers would be given an increase in their annual bonuses. The workers of Mahalla al-Kubra’s Misr Spinning and Weaving Company, the country’s largest public sector textile company employing 27,000 people, were overjoyed at the decree. 

Nigerian women win concessions from Chevron through occupation, 2002

Country
Nigeria
Time period
8 July, 2002 to 25 July, 2002
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Environment
Human Rights
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Thomas Fortuna, 16/10/2011

In 1956, Shell British Petroleum (now Royal Dutch Shell) discovered oil in what was then the British colony of Nigeria, and by 1958 commercial production had begun. Today, Nigeria has the tenth largest proven oil reserves in the world, is the tenth largest oil producer, and is the eighth largest oil exporter; yet nearly two-thirds of Nigerians live on less than $1.25 a day, 70% live below the national poverty line, and 83% live on less than $2 a day (each of those measurements place Nigeria in the bottom ten out of countries for which data is available).

Chilean women occupy empty mine to protest job losses, 2010

Country
Chile
Time period
November 16, 2010 to November 30, 2010
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Total points
4 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Sachie Hopkins-Hayakawa, 24/04/2011

On February 27, 2010 a magnitude 8.8 earthquake struck Chile and was soon followed by a tsunami. In total, there were as many as 800 deaths and $30 billion in damage because of the earthquake. Following the earthquake, much of Chile was ravaged and thousands of people were left unemployed. In response the Chilean government began instituting employment programs in the Bio Bio, Maule, and O’Higgins regions, where unemployment rates were particularly high. The programs paid residents to help rebuild their communities and to clear rubble from the towns.

Lawrence, MA factory workers strike "for Bread and Roses," U.S. 1912

Country
United States
Time period
11 January, 1912 to 12 March, 1912
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Total points
10 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Kelly Schoolmeester, 29/03/2010

As we come marching, marching, we battle too for men,
For they are women's children, and we mother them again.
Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;
Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses!
- James Oppenheim (Used as the rallying cry for the movement)

Houston janitors campaign for economic justice, 2005-2006

Country
United States
Time period
April 30, 2005 to November 21, 2006
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Total points
8 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Gavin Musynske, 30/11/2009

In Houston, the largest cleaning companies paid their janitors an average of $5.25 per hour and did not provide health benefits. Meanwhile, in other cities the average salary for a janitor position was between $10-20 an hour and family health benefits were provided. The Service Employee’s International Union (SEIU), under the leadership of its president, Stephen Lerner, utilized the Justice for Janitors Campaign, which involved over 200,000 janitors in more than 28 cities across the United States, to fight to improve the working conditions and benefits for these workers.

Asian immigrant garment workers campaign for economic justice, San Francisco, USA, 1992-1996

Country
United States
Time period
September, 1992 to March, 1996
Classification
Defense
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Rebecca Contreras, 10/02/2011

When the San Francisco Bay based Lucky Sewing Co. filed for bankruptcy in May of 1992, they laid off twelve Chinese immigrant women whom they owed $15,000 in back wages. The company’s attorney claimed that they had few assets and there was no money to pay the seamstresses.  Lucky Sewing Co. and other garment contractors imposed terrible conditions on workers who were often paid less than the $4.25 minimum wage.

Icelandic women strike for economic and social equality, 1975

Country
Iceland
Time period
October 24, 1975 to October 24, 1975
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
9 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Max Rennebohm 15/11/2009

There were many organizations dedicated to the realization of full women’s rights in Iceland in 1975, drawing from a history of previous women’s movements that dealt with the issues of suffrage, national independence, and equal rights. Such movements had lost momentum since the 1920s when groups of women had put together women’s slates for election to parliament and municipal governments.

Women's textile strike in Barcelona, Spain, 1913

Country
Spain
Time period
July, 1913 to September 15, 1913
Classification
Change
Cluster
Economic Justice
Human Rights
Total points
5 out of 10 points
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy
Zein Nakhoda, 22/03/2010

In 1913, sixteen to eighteen percent of all women over fourteen in and around Barcelona worked in textile factories and related industries. Spinning and weaving workshops usually employed fewer than 40 women and these women worked eleven to twelve hour days. In contrast, male workers usually worked only ten-hour days. Male wages varied between 3 and 3.75 pesetas while female wages were between 1.75 and 2.50 pesetas, with few women earning over 2. Some women worked from the home, manufacturing corsets, paper boxes, shoes, and garments for employers who provided them with piecework.