Chicago

Postal worker in Chicago dies in apparent suicide in mail truck

By Marcus Day, 4 March 2021

A postal worker was found dead in Chicago Monday night, having hung herself in the back of her mail truck, according to a report from a police scanner and comments by union officials.

Thousands of students return for in-person schooling in Chicago

By Kristina Betinis, 28 February 2021

An estimated 37,000 K-5 students will return to buildings this week as negotiations with the Lightfoot administration and the Chicago Teachers Union begin for the return of high school students in the spring.

Chicago and Cook County allocate the bulk of CARES Act funding to police and jail spending

By Alexander Fangmann, 28 February 2021

The decision to allocate the bulk of funding toward the repressive apparatus of the state, pushed from the highest levels of the Democratic Party, is a clear sign of the priorities of the ruling class, which has devoted a comparatively miniscule amount towards any kind of relief for workers.

Chicago elementary teachers begin returning to classrooms under near-total media blackout

By Alexander Fangmann, 24 February 2021

While local reporters and the Chicago Teachers Union maintain a wall of silence over the dangers facing educators and students, schools have become the number one potential exposure locations in the state, according to contact tracing.

999 Pseudo-left and Chicago school reopenings

23 February 2021

Opposition to relocation of toxic metal recycling plant to Chicago’s working-class South Side raises political questions

By George Gallanis, 21 February 2021

While there is widespread opposition to the relocation of the General Iron plant to Chicago’s working-class South Side, the politics of the opposition must be scrutinized.

Learn from the CTU’s betrayal in Chicago! Build committees nationwide to stop school reopenings!

Chicago Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 20 February 2021

The effort to reopen schools in Chicago was aimed at setting a precedent for reopening districts everywhere and shifting the relationship of class forces in the US as a whole.

999 (2/16) Pseudo-left on CTU sellout in Chicago

18 February 2021

Karen Lewis, former president of the Chicago Teachers Union, dies at 67

By Alexander Fangmann, 14 February 2021

Lewis’ death prompted an outpouring of sympathy and praise from the corporate media, fellow union officials and the Democratic Socialists of America, but a closer examination of her record tells a very different story.

As Chicago teachers begin return to classrooms, new arenas of struggle emerge

By Kristina Betinis, 12 February 2021

As another wave of students, teachers and staff are returned to buildings in the wake of the union’s betrayal, new arenas of struggle are opening in Chicago and beyond.

Lessons of the betrayal by the Chicago Teachers Union

By Evan Blake, 11 February 2021

What has unfolded in Chicago over the past month is the most damning exposure of the reactionary character of pseudo-left “social justice unionism.”

999 CTU rams through school reopening

11 February 2021

Educators fight to save lives in Chicago, São Paulo and worldwide

By Evan Blake, 10 February 2021

Educators are now at the forefront of the global working class movement to contain the pandemic and save lives.

Vote “No” on the CTU-CPS plan to reopen Chicago schools! Saving lives is non-negotiable!

By Chicago Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 9 February 2021

The tentative deal Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) leaders reached over the weekend with Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials is an abject surrender that must be rejected.

Chicago Teachers Union delegates approve deal to reopen schools, as opposition among educators grows

By Tom Hall, 9 February 2021

While the CTU leadership body voted by a wide margin to approve the deal, there is enormous anxiety within the union bureaucracy and the Democratic Party that they may be unable to force the contract through during a vote scheduled to conclude at midnight today.

Faurecia Gladstone parts workers in Indiana support Chicago teachers

Faurecia Gladstone Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 9 February 2021

The Rank-and-File Safety Committee at the Faurecia Gladstone plant in Columbus, Indiana, has issued the following statement in support of the Chicago teachers.

Outpouring of international support for Chicago educators’ fight to save lives

By Will McCalliss and Evan Blake, 9 February 2021

The WSWS has received dozens of statements of support for Chicago teachers from educators and other workers around the world.

999 Chicago Educators R&F statement opposing TA to reopen schools

9 February 2021

Chicago Teachers Union endorses a bargain with death, agrees to in-person classes

By Evan Blake, 8 February 2021

City officials and the leadership of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) came to an agreement Sunday on a deadly plan to reopen schools in the third largest district in the US at the height of the pandemic.

Sri Lankan educators' safety committee salutes Chicago teachers

Teacher-Student-Parent Rank and File Safety Committee statement (Sri Lanka), 8 February 2021

“We will campaign among teachers and students in support of the Chicago teachers’ struggle, explaining this important experience. The Chicago struggle is our fight.”

999 (2/5) Racial politics and Chicago

8 February 2021

Unite with Chicago teachers to save lives and prepare a general strike!

Zac Corrigan, 6 February 2021

Chicago educators are in a fight for their lives, and they need the support of educators and workers everywhere.

Chicago teachers poised to strike as mayor threatens another lockout

By Kristina Betinis, 6 February 2021

A strike in Chicago would provoke similar opposition across the US and join a global upsurge of educators striking against school reopenings in over a dozen countries.

Chicago educators organize independent opposition to teacher union’s plans to reopen schools

By Evan Blake, 5 February 2021

As the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) and city and school officials continue secret negotiations to try to reach a deadly compromise to reopen schools, there is a powerful movement of opposition developing among rank-and-file educators.

New York City educators call for unity with Chicago educators in fight to close schools

New York City Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 4 February 2021

We urge Chicago teachers to build rank-and-file committees as the center of opposition to whatever miserable deal the CTU attempts to sell to reopen schools.

“They are placing human safety and survival above capitalist interests”

Students speak out in support of Chicago teachers struggle against in-person learning

By Our reporters, 4 February 2021

The International Youth and Students for Social Equality spoke to students throughout the United States on the struggle of the Chicago teachers and found widespread support.

European educators support the struggle of Chicago teachers against the unsafe opening of schools

European rank-and-file education safety committees, 4 February 2021

The rank-and-file education safety committees in Germany and the UK have adopted the following statement of solidarity with the protesting teachers in Chicago.

As educators continue to resist, Chicago Teachers Union and district move closer to deal to reopen schools

By Evan Blake, 4 February 2021

Among rank-and-file Chicago educators, there is enormous opposition to the campaign to reopen schools and a wide recognition that this is solely in the interests of the financial elite.

Keeping Chicago schools closed during the pandemic is not negotiable!

Chicago Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 4 February 2021

We are fighting to mobilize opposition to any agreement reached by CPS and the CTU to reopen schools, and to prepare for general strike action with the broader working class.

Reopening schools during the pandemic is not negotiable! Lives and health are not negotiable!

Chicago Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 4 February 2021

We call on Chicago educators to mobilize opposition to any agreement reached by CPS and the CTU to reopen schools, and to prepare for general strike action with the broader working class to close all schools and nonessential businesses.

Wall Street Journal demands Biden crack down on Chicago teachers

By Jerry White, 3 February 2021

In a statement by its editorial board Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal angrily criticized President Biden for being too soft on Chicago teachers, who are defying Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s order to resume in-person classes as the pandemic continues to spread in the city.

999 Chicago teachers struggle against reopening

3 February 2021

What the science really says: Closing schools is vital to containing COVID-19

By Andre Damon, 3 February 2021

As over 10,000 Chicago teachers and staff are engaged in a struggle to oppose the city’s effort to reopen public schools, the entire US media is waging a campaign to pressure educators to resume in-person schooling.

“We need to band together and say, ‘No’ to brick-and-mortar schooling”

Educators and other workers across US express support for Chicago teachers

Our reporters, 2 February 2021

Educators across the US, as well as autoworkers in Illinois, Indiana and Michigan expressed their support for the courageous stand taken by Chicago educators.

Chicago educators call for strike as district continues threats

By Evan Blake, 2 February 2021

There is growing support for strike action as Mayor Lori Lightfoot, with the backing of the Biden administration, prepares to retaliate against educators if the Chicago Teachers Union fails to get them back in schools.

Chicago teachers take a stand to save lives over profits

By Evan Blake, 2 February 2021

The struggle unfolding in Chicago is of monumental significance and must become the spearhead of a broader movement of the entire working class in a nationwide political general strike, which would send shock waves throughout the world and provoke similar struggles globally.

Chicago educators call for a strike as district threatens lockout

By Evan Blake, 1 February 2021

In defying the dictates of the Chicago Democratic Party political machine, educators are giving voice to the strivings of millions of workers across the US and globally to implement measures to contain the pandemic and save lives.

999 Effort to force Chicago schools to reopen

1 February 2021

Negotiations stall in Chicago amid nationwide campaign to open schools

By Kristina Betinis, 30 January 2021

Every effort is being made by the political and media establishment to vilify Chicago educators and wear down their opposition, to pave the way for profit-driven school reopenings at the most dangerous stage of the pandemic.

Chicago teachers lead resistance to Biden’s school reopening plan as pandemic enters deadlier phase

By Jerry White, 28 January 2021

Chicago educators are in the forefront of the resistance of educators across the US to the campaign by the Biden administration and the corporate media to reopen schools.

“We were just the test animals”

Victimized Chicago teacher speaks out against deadly school reopening

By Michael Walters, 28 January 2021

When Chicago Public Schools demanded Chicago teachers return to teach in unsafe pandemic conditions, hundreds refused and the district retaliated by locking more than 150 educators out.

The Chicago teachers’ rebellion and the fight to contain the pandemic

By Evan Blake, 27 January 2021

Acutely aware of the militancy among educators, the corporate media and political establishment are engaged in a frenzied propaganda campaign to vilify teachers and distort science.

Chicago educators to remain teaching remotely on Wednesday

By Alexander Fangmann, 27 January 2021

Overwhelming opposition to reopening schools among educators and other workers leads Chicago mayor to back off from threats of retaliation.

A revealing episode

Chicago teacher opposing return to school maligned for citing anti-Nazi poem

By Kristina Betinis, 27 January 2021

The Chicago Teachers Union’s support for the Anti-Defamation League’s specious attack on high school teacher Stu Abram highlights the CTU’s complicity in the reopening of schools, and its downplaying both the severity of the pandemic and the danger of the far right.

Overwhelming opposition among Chicago educators to deadly school reopenings

By Alexander Fangmann, 25 January 2021

After teachers overwhelmingly approved a union resolution to continue teaching remotely, CPS CEO Janice Jackson announced the return of K-8 educators would be delayed to Wednesday.

Chicago educators form independent rank-and-file committee to fight school reopenings

Close schools and nonessential production until the pandemic is contained! Full income protection to all!

Chicago Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 21 January 2021

We call on all educators and support staff, and workers from all industries, to join and help build our committee in your school or workplace, independently of both big-business parties and their backers in the CTU and other unions.

Chicago Teachers Union postures with “strike” vote as schools continue in-person learning

By Alexander Fangmann, 20 January 2021

In response to overwhelming anger from teachers and parents over the continued drive to reopen schools and businesses in the city, the union’s House of Delegates is calling an emergency meeting Wednesday.

999 Chicago Educators R&F Committee founding statement

20 January 2021

999 Chicago schools update or r/f statement

18 January 2021

Lightfoot administration blocked release of video showing Chicago police crushing woman’s leg with SUV

By George Gallanis, 16 January 2021

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and her Democratic administration, aware of the growing social tensions in Chicago’s working class, are concerned that the quick release of incriminating police violence videos can lead to massive social upheavals.

Teachers and parents speak out on deadly reopening of Chicago Public Schools

By Our reporters, 15 January 2021

There is growing opposition throughout Chicago to the city’s Democratic leaders aggressive push to reopen schools, bars and restaurants as COVID-19 infections are ripping through schools and other workplaces.

Chicago teachers docked pay and locked out of virtual classrooms for not teaching in-person

By Alexander Fangmann, 13 January 2021

As district officials continue to peddle lies about the safety of reopening schools, CTU is negotiating over a reopening plan that would split the working class and undermine the struggle to close non-essential workplaces until mass vaccination is carried out.

As students return to Chicago schools, educators face battle against Democrats and the CTU

By Alexander Fangmann, 11 January 2021

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and school officials continue to press bringing children back into classrooms on Monday in the face of widespread opposition among parents, teachers and other educators.

Nineteen-year-old Chicago, Illinois auto mechanic dies of COVID-19

By William Quartermaine, 8 January 2021

Arnold Herrera had just recently been certified as a brakes and electrics specialist before succumbing suddenly to the coronavirus last weekend.

999 Chicago police crushed womans leg with car

7 January 2021

999 CTU official travels to Puerto Rico as schools open

6 January 2021

Chicago Teachers Union leader partied in Puerto Rico as teachers were herded back into schools

By Kristina Betinis and Jerry White, 6 January 2021

The incident exposed the class gulf between the union and rank-and-file educators, who are fighting to protect their lives as the Democratic Lightfoot administration forces a return to dangerous schools.

Chicago schools press ahead with reopening despite wide opposition among teachers and parents

By Alexander Fangmann, 5 January 2021

Even though only 23 percent of families opted to return their students to in-person schooling, the district has maintained its aggressive push to bring educators and children back into classrooms.

999 CTU official travels to Puerto Rico, right wing uses to push to reopen Chicago schools

5 January 2021

Illinois high school student dies of COVID-19

By Andy Thompson, 4 January 2021

A senior at Lincoln Way East High School in Frankfort, Illinois, Sarah Simental was just a few months from graduating in the spring.

Chicago officials refuse teacher accommodations in order to force school reopenings

By Alexander Fangmann, 31 December 2020

While the district is ordering roughly 5,800 educators to report to schools on Monday as COVID-19 cases in the city remain dangerously high, the Chicago Teachers Union is working to prevent any coordinated and effective fight.

Crisis mounts in Chicago as Lightfoot admits lying and an official resigns following brutal police raid

By Alexander Fangmann, 22 December 2020

The resignation of Corporation Counsel Mark Flessner is part of a campaign to deflect attention away from the deeply entrenched lawlessness and violence that has been cultivated in the police through nearly a century of Democratic Party rule.

999 (12/20) CPS hires 2000 teachers to reopen

21 December 2020

Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Teachers Union advance deadly school reopening plans

By Kristina Betinis and Michael Walters, 21 December 2020

Amid record COVID-19 deaths, the Chicago Teachers Union is working with city leaders to begin bringing teachers back to school buildings January 4.

Eight deaths as hundreds of Chicago transit workers infected by COVID-19

By Brian Green, 21 December 2020

A report by the Chicago Sun-Times showing 900 COVID-19 infections and eight deaths among Chicago Transit Authority employees since the start of the pandemic underscores the criminal role played by the unions in imposing unsafe conditions.

Chicago mayor Lightfoot sought to block release of video of wrongful police raid

By Alexander Fangmann, 16 December 2020

City lawyers tried to suppress a CBS newscast depicting the brutal and illegal 2019 night-time raid on the home of social worker Anjanette Young and are seeking to sanction the victim.

SEIU Healthcare reaches tentative agreement with management in Illinois nursing home strike

By Alexander Fangmann, 7 December 2020

The union abandoned wage demands and any meaningful protections for workers in order to herd them back into facilities with active COVID-19 outbreaks.

Illinois nursing home workers strike in second week as pandemic surges: Build rank-and-file-committees to save lives

By Jessica Goldstein and Kristina Betinis, 3 December 2020

The strike of some 700 Chicago-area Infinity Healthcare workers entered its second week as the state records COVID-19 deaths.

Amid pandemic surge in school-aged children

Chicago Public Schools unveils reopening plan

By Alexander Fangmann, 2 December 2020

The Chicago Public Schools reopening plan ignores the deadly reality of COVID-19 and will result in the needless deaths of even more Illinois teachers, students and family members.

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

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.