Chicago

Service workers at University of Illinois hospital vote on contract after nurses union pushes through sellout

By Jessica Goldstein, 7 October 2020

After a 10-day strike by 4,000 workers last month, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is attempting to force through concessions on the heels of a similar sellout by the Illinois Nurses Association last week.

Strike by 4,000 service workers at University of Illinois at Chicago enters its second week

By Andy Thompson and Fabian Salgado, 23 September 2020

To oppose the sellout being prepared, striking hospital workers must follow the examples of auto workers and educators by forming rank-and-file committees.

160 UIC staff strike

22 September 2020

Strike by 4,000 University of Illinois at Chicago workers reaching critical juncture

By Jessica Goldstein, 21 September 2020

The only way for service workers and nurses at UIC and UIH to combat poverty wages and the threat of the pandemic is to take their struggle into their own hands.

Union shuts down nurses strike at University of Illinois Hospital in Chicago

By George Gallanis and Fabian Salgado, 19 September 2020

The Illinois Nurses Association ended the strike without a new contract and isolating 4,000 staffers on the picket line.

“We’re going to keep fighting”

Opposition mounts as thousands of University of Illinois at Chicago nurses and workers continue strike

By Kylie Rose, 17 September 2020

The university administration and the Democratic Party are increasingly nervous over the support striking workers have elicited.

Strike by University of Illinois at Chicago nurses and workers continues, as Illinois Democratic governor threatens to decimate state budget

By James Martin and Kristina Betinis, 16 September 2020

A virtual blackout of the strikes at UIC and its hospital in the national press indicates the growing fear in ruling circles over the development of working class opposition.

Four thousand University of Illinois at Chicago staff join striking nurses

By Kristina Betinis and Marcus Day, 15 September 2020

The now nearly 5,000 university health and staff workers are locked in a battle against the Democratic state leadership and must expand their struggle for health and safety.

“In the end, it is all about profit"

University of Illinois Hospital nurses strike over staff shortages, unsafe conditions

By Benjamin Mateus and George Gallanis, 14 September 2020

UIH nurses in Chicago walked out Saturday to demand patient limits and safe work environments.

University of Illinois at Chicago workers go on strike against low wages and unsafe conditions

By Kylie Rose and Andy Thompson, 14 September 2020

Workers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have gone on strike against low wages and unsafe conditions as the COVID-19 pandemic spreads rapidly through college campuses.

Attorney General William Barr boosts Trump campaign for police repression

By Kristina Betinis, 11 September 2020

Touting the success of the federal policing effort Operation Legend, Barr spoke in Chicago at what was essentially a Trump re-election campaign stop and toured strategic Chicago police facilities.

After another police riot, Chicago mayor rises to national prominence as law-and-order figure

By Kristina Betinis, 18 August 2020

Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s role at the DNC underscores the right-wing and anti-democratic character of the Democratic Party, which seeks to demonstrate it will be better than Trump in securing the class interests of the financial aristocracy.

Ford Chicago Assembly workers launch Rank-and-File Safety Committee to save lives

By the Ford Chicago Assembly Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 12 August 2020

Our coworkers are falling ill and even dying, but management and the union refuse to tell us the truth about how many have been exposed to or become infected with COVID-19.

Chicago mayor locks down business district after police shooting sparks looting

By Kristina Betinis, 11 August 2020

Democratic officials responded by deploying more police, threatening more aggressive prosecutions and cutting off nighttime access to the Loop.

Caleb Reed, a youth activist in Chicago, falls victim to gun violence

By Brian Green, 10 August 2020

Most recently Reed opposed Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s budget that starves schools of resources while flooding the Police Department with billions of dollars.

ArcelorMittal lays off hundreds of steelworkers in Indiana, Ohio

By George Gallanis, 4 August 2020

The layoffs in Indiana and Ohio are part of an ongoing global assault on steelworkers’ jobs.

Two-week strike by Joliet, Illinois nurses in danger

By Benjamin Mateus and Jerry White, 17 July 2020

The nurses have taken a defiant stand not just for themselves but for all health care workers, but the unions are isolating their strike.

Joliet, Illinois nurses reject sellout contract, continue strike

By Benjamin Mateus, 13 July 2020

The nurses voted 393 to 154 to defeat the contract proposed by the Illinois Nurses Association, which did nothing to reduce the dangerously high patient-to-nurse ratios.

“This is going to kill us—not coronavirus, but how broken the health care system is”

An Illinois nurse speaks out against corporate control of health care systems

By Jessica Goldstein, 10 July 2020

The nurse spoke to the WSWS after being furloughed for speaking out against a hospital’s corporate policies that discriminated against low-income patients during the pandemic.

Chicago mayor uses rise in social distress, violent crime to advance “law and order” policing

By Kristina Betinis, 8 July 2020

The spurt in violent crime, coinciding with the ongoing protests against police violence, is being used to justify a heightening of police repression.

Caterpillar slashes jobs in Illinois, rewards corporate shareholders

By Jessica Goldstein, 2 July 2020

Caterpillar is one of many US-based corporations that have laid off workers and cut jobs and pay since the pandemic took hold in the US, as it continued to pay out dividends to investors.

City of Chicago announces plan for mass arrest and detention of youth over holiday weekend

By Andy Thompson, 2 July 2020

The plan for arrest and jailing of teenagers comes as the Lightfoot administration has stepped up policing in wake of recent protests and as President Trump urges Democratic leaders in Illinois to take “decisive action” against gun violence.

As COVID-19 cases continue to climb throughout US

Hundreds of thousands of Illinois workers forced to risk health for profits under “Phase 4” of economic reopening

By Jessica Goldstein, 25 June 2020

A real answer to mass unemployment does not require putting hundreds of thousands of more workers’ lives at risk.

The fight to put the SEP on the ballot continues as Illinois court denies challenge to relaxed ballot access rules

By Kristina Betinis, 23 June 2020

An appeals court denied a challenge to an April ruling that the pandemic and social distancing presented a “nearly insurmountable hurdle” to the in-person collection of tens of thousands of signatures.

University of Chicago grad students disaffiliate from the American Federation of Teachers

By Andy Thompson, 22 June 2020

This case is only the latest in a series of bitter experiences grad students all across the country have had with AFT and other trade unions.

SEP launches petition to appear on the presidential ballot in Illinois

17 June 2020

Supporters of the SEP are fighting to gather 5,000 electronic signatures to place Joseph Kishore and Norissa Santa Cruz on the ballot for the general election in November.

191 Chicago grad students break with AFT

15 June 2020

Chicago mayor appoints corporate leaders to Economic Recovery Task Force

By Kristina Betinis and Fabian Salgado, 20 May 2020

As deficits mount, the task force appointments place the right-wing, pro-business character of “diversity” and “equity” appointments on full display.

Illinois reports record COVID-19 death toll as businesses and politicians prepare to “reopen”

By Kristina Betinis, 14 May 2020

Record rates of infection and death are announced as state and local officials and business leaders are preparing to phase out shelter-in-place, sending workers back to their jobs in order to finance the bailout of Wall Street and the super-rich.

COVID-19 cases increase across Illinois as many counties push to reopen

By Brian Brown, 29 April 2020

The pandemic poses enormous problems for rural areas where public health programs and hospitals have been greatly defunded over the last decade, leaving vulnerable residents in greater danger.

“This pandemic is showing that something is wrong in our society”

10,000 nursing home workers vote to strike in Illinois in the face of life-threatening working conditions

By Jessica Goldstein, 29 April 2020

The coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage nursing home residents and staff, accounting for 35 percent of COVID-19 cases in Illinois.

As coronavirus cases climb, Chicago city council expands mayor’s emergency powers

By Kristina Betinis, 25 April 2020

After a procedural delay, a vote to approve the measure that gives Lightfoot substantial sway over the city budget took place Friday.

090 Chicago mayor emergency powers act

24 April 2020

Reckless coal plant demolition covers Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood in dust amid coronavirus lockdown

By Michael Walters, 16 April 2020

Those living closest to the demolition reported dust entering through cracks in the door and windows of their homes.

Former Dallas police chief who used a robot to kill shooting suspect appointed Chicago’s top cop

By Brian Brown and George Marlowe, 7 April 2020

The appointment by Mayor Lori Lightfoot of former Dallas police chief David Brown to head the Chicago Police Department is part of the city’s preparation to intensify the repression of the working class in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Chicago’s largest convention center to become 3,050-bed field hospital

By Kristina Betinis and Jessica Goldstein, 30 March 2020

After critical weeks of inaction, Illinois state and federal agencies are working to create isolation and treatment facilities in anticipation of hospitals reaching capacity.

Illinois governor belatedly places entire state under “stay-at-home” order in response to coronavirus pandemic

By Alexander Fangmann, 21 March 2020

Democratic officials have done nothing to mitigate the spread of coronavirus, holding Tuesday’s primary election in person and keeping Chicago’s libraries and parks open up until Saturday.

After Mayor Lightfoot unveils plan to increase policing

Video of brutal police shooting of unarmed man in Chicago train station sparks outrage

By Jessica Goldstein, 2 March 2020

Friday’s incident stands in sharp contrast to the racialist politics of the Democratic Party and the political organizations in its orbit which portray police brutality as a problem that stems from racism, not from the capitalist system.

Third round of layoffs in two months at Chicago Stamping Plant

By George Gallanis, 24 February 2020

Last year’s sellout contract by the UAW has emboldened the company to continue their attacks on workers.

Sanders fails to get endorsement from Chicago Teachers Union

By Kristina Betinis, 19 February 2020

The CTU leaders are cultivating ever-closer ties to the Democratic Party political establishment, which is campaigning to defeat a Sanders nomination.

999 CTU defeats Sanders endorsement

14 February 2020

Ford planning temporary layoffs at Chicago Stamping Plant

By Marcus Day, 23 January 2020

The layoffs further discredit the UAW’s hollow promises of a “pathway” to full-time employment for temporary workers.

Retiring Chicago Police Chief Superintendent fired after video shows police body-slamming a mentally ill man

By Ben Mateus, 3 December 2019

Democratic mayor Lori Lightfoot offered a standard prepared statement noting that the ensuing investigation “will be comprehensive and expedited so that the public may gain a complete picture.”

Chicago Teachers Unions pushes through austerity contract, paving way for school closures

By Kristina Betinis, 18 November 2019

The five-year contract, lauded by union and city leaders, threatens more school closures and continues the starvation of the country’s third-largest school district.

School closures threatened as Chicago teachers vote on widely-hated tentative agreement

By George Marlowe, 15 November 2019

The Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey wrote a letter threatening school closures by Mayor Lightfoot as teachers vote on an agreement favored by Wall Street and widely opposed by new and veteran educators.

Union-backed Chicago Sun-Times attacks Chicago teachers

By Michael Walters and George Gallanis, 14 November 2019

The Sun-Times, co-owned by the Chicago Federation of Labor, published several articles smearing and attacking Chicago teachers for fighting for improved schools and wages.

As contract vote approaches, DSA defends sellout by Chicago Teachers Union

By Kristina Betinis and Jerry White, 12 November 2019

DSA is seeking to block political discussion and opposition to the Chicago Teachers Union contract that meets none of the teachers’ central demands.

230 Pseudo-left and Chicago teachers

11 November 2019

Vote “no” on the tentative teachers' contract! Form rank-and-file committees to defend public education in Chicago!

By Alexander Fangmann, 7 November 2019

With voting set to begin on the tentative agreement, teachers and other educators in Chicago are approaching a critical juncture in the fight to defend public education.

Chicago teachers denounce union’s sellout agreement as Bernie Sanders, Democrats claim “victory”

By George Marlowe, 5 November 2019

Despite the official celebration, the CTU’s tentative agreement for a five-year contract entirely accepts the terms set by Chicago Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

Chicago Mayor Lightfoot’s budget: Increased policing and austerity on behalf of the financial aristocracy

By Alexander Fangmann, 2 November 2019

Lightfoot’s first budget, containing large increases to the police department and higher fees affecting workers, is a continuation of the Democratic Party’s right-wing assault on the working class.

Oppose the betrayal of the Chicago teachers strike!

CTU moves to shut down strike without giving teachers right to vote on sellout contract

By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 1 November 2019

The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) announced on Thursday that it is shutting down the 11-day strike, the longest in thirty years, and sending teachers back to work today before giving them the right to vote on a new contract.

Chicago Teachers Union attempting to ram through tentative agreement over widespread opposition

By Kristina Betinis, 31 October 2019

The tentative agreement announced by the CTU Wednesday night betrays all the aspirations of the 24,000 teachers who have been on strike for ten days.

Oppose the betrayal of the Chicago teachers strike!

CTU moves to shut down strike without giving teachers right to vote on sellout contract

By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 31 October 2019

The Chicago Teachers Union has announced it is shutting down the 11-day strike and sending teachers back to work tomorrow without giving them the right to vote on a new contract.

Chicago Teachers Union preparing the betrayal of teachers' strike

By a WSWS reporting team, 30 October 2019

The CTU is laying the groundwork for the betrayal of the ten-day strike of 25,000 public school teachers, the city's second-longest in over two decades.

Democrats, union leaders intensify pressure on striking Chicago teachers to accept austerity contract

By Kristina Betinis, 29 October 2019

In a rush to end the strike, CTU leaders offered to settle for additional school funding amounting to a fraction of a percent of the school district’s budget.

As educators enter eighth school day on strike

Chicago school staff union breaks ranks with teachers, signs tentative deal

By George Marlowe, 28 October 2019

The sellout contract agreed to by SEIU Local 73 paves the way for the Chicago Teachers Union to order the teachers back to work.

Chicago Teachers Union and Democratic Party conspire to end Chicago teachers strike

By George Gallanis and George Marlowe, 26 October 2019

The powerful strike by 32,000 Chicago teachers is in danger of being isolated and betrayed by the Chicago Teachers Union.

The way forward in the Chicago teachers strike

The defense of public education and the fight for socialism

the Socialist Equality Party, 26 October 2019

The strike by 32,000 Chicago teachers and support staff, now in its second week, is at a crossroads.

Walkout enters seventh day

Striking Chicago teachers confront Democratic Party machine and union’s effort to isolate their struggle

By Kristina Betinis, 25 October 2019

City officials are demanding new cuts while the Chicago Teachers Union seeks to isolate the teachers’ struggle and prevent the active mobilization of mass support among workers and youth.

Tens of thousands of Chicago teachers and staff rally as Lightfoot administration announces austerity budget

By George Marlowe, 24 October 2019

The powerful strike by 32,000 teachers and school workers in Chicago is completing its third week today, as the city makes clear it will not agree to any of the teachers’ demands.

Chicago Public Schools teachers, staff and students oppose concessions

By a WSWS reporting team, 24 October 2019

Teachers, staff, parents and students spoke on their demands, the conditions in schools and their opposition to the Democratic Party’s decades of attacks on public education.

Teachers’ union calls on Elizabeth Warren in bid to strangle strike against Chicago’s Democratic machine

By Barry Grey, 23 October 2019

At Tuesday’s rally, AFT President Weingarten began by holding up the sellout of this year’s Los Angeles teachers’ strike as a victory and model for the Chicago teachers.

Striking Chicago educators speak on their demands

By a WSWS reporting team, 23 October 2019

Keyatta, a teacher’s assistant at Laura Ward Elementary said, “We need more support! Smaller class sizes, more nurses, more support staff, so no one person is trying to teach 35 kids, all at different learning levels."

Lightfoot administration ratchets up pressure on Chicago teachers to end the walkout

By Alexander Fangmann, 22 October 2019

Claiming there is “no more money,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot and schools CEO Janice Jackson issued a letter calling on the CTU to end the strike and return teachers to the classroom while talks continue.

Form rank-and-file strike committees to expand the struggle!

Chicago teachers’ strike in danger as CTU maneuvers to shut it down

By Kristina Betinis, 21 October 2019

The success of this struggle depends on a clear understanding of what teachers are up against—who are their friends and who are their enemies.

As Chicago teachers strike completes second day, union and Democratic Party working together to shut it down

By George Gallanis, 19 October 2019

What is happening behind the scenes is not a genuine fight between the Lightfoot administration and the CTU and SEIU, but a discussion of tactics and plans to best ram through another sellout contract.

More than 30,000 teachers and staff strike in Chicago, Illinois

By Kristina Betinis, 18 October 2019

The Chicago Teachers Union is working closely with Democratic Party politicians who control the city to shut down the strike as quickly as possible and impose an agreement that conforms to the city’s demands.

32,000 Chicago Public Schools teachers and staff strike

By Kristina Betinis, 17 October 2019

Teachers must make an independent initiative to expand their struggle against the Democratic Party and its program of austerity and corporate-backed “school reform.”

Chicago teachers expected to strike Thursday, as union pledges to limit it to a “short-term” walkout

By Kristina Betinis, 16 October 2019

Despite having dropped some of the union's demands and announced “a path to a settlement” with Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s school board, CTU leaders have said it is unlikely they can avert a strike.

230 CTU and teachers strike

15 October 2019

Chicago Teachers Union announces “path” to block strike and impose austerity settlement

By Kristina Betinis, 14 October 2019

CTU leaders announced on Saturday a proposal that will allow the district to “phase in” resources in a school system that has been denied the basics for decades.

Chicago teachers, schools staff and parks district workers set joint October 17 strike date

By Kristina Betinis, 4 October 2019

Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot wants teachers to accept wage increases that barely rise above the inflation rate along with higher healthcare costs and more cuts to school services.

Chicago teachers vote overwhelmingly to authorize strike

By Kristina Betinis, 28 September 2019

The 94 percent authorization vote is a powerful expression of opposition to the conditions imposed by decades of Democratic mayoral administrations.

Striking University of Chicago nurses return to work after five-day lock-out

By Benjamin Mateus, 28 September 2019

The nurses returned to work on Wednesday without any resolution of their grievances.

University of Chicago nurses locked out for conducting a one-day strike

By Benjamin Mateus, 21 September 2019

More than 2,200 nurses at the University of Chicago Medical Center who conducted a one-day strike face a five-day lockout as temporary nurses were hired to fill in.

As negotiations drag on

Chicago teachers union sets September 26 date for strike authorization vote

By Kristina Betinis, 7 September 2019

If a strike wins support by 75 percent of CTU members, teachers could walk out October 7.

“They said they were going to fix everything—people still are hurting"

One year since the Chicago house fire that killed ten children

By Benjamin Mateus and George Gallanis, 6 September 2019

Since the time of the Little Village fire, the same processes that led to the blaze in one of Chicago’s poor, working-class neighborhoods have led to even more fire tragedies in the city.

Chicago Cambria Hotel workers continue strike

By Benjamin Mateus, 4 September 2019

Cambria workers remain on strike, their struggle isolated by UNITE HERE, as they battle against the hotel owners, OPERS, the public employee pension fund managed by several unions.

US Steel to lay off 150 workers in Indiana as Trump administration escalates trade war

By Jessica Goldstein, 27 August 2019

The announcement of the layoffs in East Chicago follows US Steel’s declaration earlier this month that up to 200 workers will lose their jobs at its Great Lakes Works facility outside Detroit.

Chicago school district and union officials prepare to sell austerity contract to teachers

By Kristina Betinis, 14 August 2019

The Democratic Party “fact-finder” has come down on the side of the district’s demands for a virtual wage freeze and further inroads on teachers’ health care benefits.

16 Shots: Documenting the Chicago Democratic Party’s cover-up of the police murder of Laquan McDonald

By Michael Walters and Kristina Betinis, 3 August 2019

Through powerful interviews with family members, witnesses, attorneys, city officials and activists, the timeline of the murder and cover-up is reconstructed.

Chicago Amazon workers confront management, demand improvements

By George Gallanis, 25 July 2019

The day after international protests against Amazon during Prime Day, Chicago Amazon workers staged a “walk-in” to demand increased pay, health insurance and air conditioning in their facility.

“I want to strike and send a message to the city”

With anger growing, Chicago Teachers Union floats threat of September walkout

By Kristina Betinis, 22 July 2019

Teachers who have suffered through years of falling real income, deteriorating classroom conditions and mass layoffs are determined to fight, but they face a brick wall of opposition from the CTU.

“International solidarity would give so much power back to the working class”

Chicago Ford worker discusses issues in 2019 contract fight

By Jessica Goldstein, 19 July 2019

An autoworker at Ford Chicago Assembly Plant raises demands and supports the Autoworker Newsletter’s call for an international strategy to fight the global attack on autoworkers.

Socialism 2019: The ex-International Socialist Organization embraces the Democratic Party

By Alexander Fangmann, 19 July 2019

Amid Trump’s threats of war, unprecedented assaults on immigrants and attacks on democratic rights, Jacobin and the ex-leaders of the ISO hosted an event promoting the Democratic Party and American imperialism.

Thousands march in Chicago to demand end to US immigrant detention camps, raids and deportations

By Kristina Betinis, 15 July 2019

The event was aimed at containing the enormous social opposition to the extreme-right policies of the Trump administration and the Republicans, within the confines of the Democratic Party,

Chicago water meter program halted after testing reveals lead contamination

By Benjamin Mateus, 10 July 2019

Officials have known for many years that the city has a serious issue related to lead in its drinking water.

"Socialism 2019" conference: A Democratic Party operation

By Alexander Fangmann, 4 July 2019

The featured speakers and panels at the Socialism Conference reveal an event devoted to channeling the leftward movement of workers and youth back into the confines of the Democratic Party.

Lutheran student pastor Betty Rendón deported back to Colombia less than a month after being detained by ICE

By Jacob Crosse, 6 June 2019

Pleas from community members and family fell on deaf ears as the Trump administration escalates its war on immigrants.

As new Democratic mayor takes office

Chicago Public Schools lay off hundreds of teachers and staff

By Kristina Betinis, 5 June 2019

Layoff notices were sent to 220 teachers and 498 support staff ahead of the June 30 Chicago Teachers Union contract expiration.

University of Chicago graduate student union plans three-day picket

By George Gallanis, 1 June 2019

Graduate students must take this struggle out of the hands of the American Federation of Teachers-backed Graduate Students United union and form rank-and-file committees.

Chicago police kill bipolar man inside his home

By Andy Thompson, 28 May 2019

Myles Frazier was shot and killed after he barricaded himself in his home in the Woodlawn neighborhood on the city’s south side.

“All schools aren’t created equal in Chicago”

Chicago teachers speak on inequality, attacks on public education at downtown rally

By Marcus Day, 24 May 2019

Teachers at a rally in downtown Chicago Wednesday described the deplorable conditions facing them and their students.

Teachers at three Chicago charter schools strike as union blocks common fight with public school educators

By Alexander Fangmann and Andy Thompson, 6 May 2019

The Chicago Teachers Union has worked closely with the Democratic Party to ensure that the two-tier education system is completely unaffected.

Horrific plant explosion kills at least three workers in northern Chicago suburb

By Jessica Goldstein, 6 May 2019

The 30,000-square foot plant was located close to residential areas, where witnesses reported power outages and structural and other property damage in nearby buildings.

Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel intervenes to end CSO musicians strike with concessions

By George Marlowe, 29 April 2019

While musicians from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra fought courageously, their seven-week strike was deliberately isolated by the unions.

“Everyone should have access to great arts education”

Musicians Emma Gerstein and Max Raimi speak on Chicago Symphony Orchestra strike

By our reporters, 27 April 2019

As the CSO strike reaches a critical turning point, musicians Emma Gerstein and Max Raimi speak about the strike and in defense of arts and culture.

Mayor Emanuel intervenes to shut down Chicago Symphony Orchestra strike

By George Marlowe, 26 April 2019

As part of his final act on behalf of the city’s financial elite, outgoing Mayor Rahm Emanuel has offered to intervene to end the nearly two-month strike by Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) musicians

University of Illinois at Chicago faculty announces deal on eve of strike

By George Gallanis, 26 April 2019

More than 1,100 professors, lecturers, instructors and assistant professors are voting on a concessionary contract being pushed by the UIC United Faculty union, an affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers.