For centuries the Church has taught that our property rights are not absolute but carry with them social obligations to all of mankind. In the modern age the Church has repeatedly instructed the faithful of the need to regulate market transactions in the service of the common good, and of the importance of intermediate associations like labor organizations in securing justice for working people...
The budget deal may send the rich empty away, but will it fill the hungry with good things?
The Hostess collapse has attracted an extraordinary quantity of news coverage. Free-market apologists have blamed the union for the bankruptcy because workers struck the company rather than accept a second massive round of concessions (following on $110 million in givebacks in 2009).
This week marks the 90th anniversary of the March on Rome. In late October of 1922, Benito Mussolini’s Blackshirts mobilized across Italy to march on the capital and demand power. By the time they arrived on October 29, the Italian government had caved to Fascist demands in order to avoid a violent confrontation. Mussolini became Prime Minister and, soon, dictator.
One of the most interesting stories of the year in labor relations at Catholic institutions has been the movement of adjunct faculty to organize in unions. Last month Pittsburgh’s Duquesne University adjunct faculty voted 50 to 9 in favor of forming a union affiliated with the United Steelworkers. Duquesne, like Manhattan College in New York and St.
The latest BLS unemployment figures indicate that nearly 10% of post-9/11 veterans 25 and over are unemployed, compared to 7.6% of civilians in that age group. In researching an America story on this phenomenon, The Next Battle, one thing that struck me was the extent to which employment prospects for our veterans are intertwined with the future of the federal government workforce.
The Labor Day Statement of the USCCB has appeared, and offers important thoughts for Christians navigating the challenges of the Great Recession. Writing in his capacity as Chair of the USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Bishop Stephen Blaire of Stockton reminds us that over 12 million are unemployed; that some ten million families are among the “working poor”; that 46 million Americans, including 16 million children, live in poverty.
In what has become a continuing unhappy subplot of the dispute over the contraceptive mandate, a third Catholic university has now asked the National Labor Relations Board for an exemption from the Wagner Act on the grounds of its religious identity. Adjunct faculty at Pittsburgh’s Duquesne University have sought to join the Steelworkers Union, but the school says that as a religious institution it is can refuse to recognize and bargain with them.
For well over a century May 1st has been celebrated around worldwide as labor’s holiday. In 1955 Pius XII established May 1st as the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker. “The Gospel specifies the kind of work Joseph did in order to support his family: he was a carpenter,” explained John Paul II in his 1989 Apostolic Exhortation On the Person and Mission of Saint Joseph in the Life of Christ and the Church.
Today’s first reading is a brief but stunning indication of one way the early disciples were transformed by the experience of the risen Christ. “Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.