North America

Major wildfires force tens of thousands to evacuate in Northern California

By Peter Ross, 1 October 2020

Two more rapidly growing wildfires have torn across Northern California since Sunday, in what has already been an unprecedented and devastating fire season across the US West Coast.

Bailed-out US airlines escalate attack on jobs

By Jacob Crosse, 1 October 2020

After receiving billions in grants, no-interest loans and Fed bond purchases through the bipartisan CARES Act, major US airlines and aerospace companies are moving forward with tens of thousands of layoffs.

The ultra-right background of Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett

By Alan Gilman, 1 October 2020

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, a protegée of arch-reactionary Antonin Scalia, would significantly shift the court in the direction of religious obscurantism and political repression.

Trump administration prepares anti-immigrant raids in Democratic Party-led “sanctuary cities” ahead of November election

By Trévon Austin, 1 October 2020

The latest maneuver in Trump’s war on immigrants cannot be separated from his effort to carry out a coup d’état and establish a presidential dictatorship.

Evasions, anti-Russian demagogy at Comey hearing before US Senate

By Patrick Martin, 1 October 2020

The former FBI director claimed dozens of times not to be aware of the details of the initial stages of the 2016 investigation into Trump and Russia.

Safety committee denounces reopening of New York City schools

Stop the spread of COVID-19! Build rank-and-file safety committees to save lives! Prepare a nationwide strike to close unsafe schools!

By the New York City Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 1 October 2020

Hundreds of thousands of middle and high school students in New York City are being sent back to classrooms for in-person instruction today as the pandemic continues to spread throughout the school system and the city.

The deadly outcome of school reopenings:

Four US school employees and two college students killed by COVID-19 this week

By Renae Cassimeda, 1 October 2020

At least 30 school teachers and staff have died from COVID-19 since late July, when schools began to reopen en masse, sending millions back into unsafe classrooms across the US.

Massive fire at Ohio auto parts plant threatens jobs and livelihoods of workers

By Katy Kinner, 1 October 2020

Employees were able to evacuate safely but many now face uncertain employment.

Detroit City Council defies public opposition and renews facial recognition contract

By Kevin Reed, 1 October 2020

A majority of the council of nine Democrats voted to approve a two-year, $220,000 upgrade and maintenance contract with South Carolina-based DataWorks Plus.

Trump’s Operation Dictatorship: What the debate exposed

By Joseph Kishore and David North, 1 October 2020

The White House is the center of a fascistic conspiracy to overturn the Constitution and establish a presidential dictatorship.

Trump uses debate to incite fascist violence

By Joseph Kishore—SEP candidate for US president, 30 September 2020

Trump renewed his call for supporters—that is, right-wing vigilante organizations—to monitor polling places and not accept the results of the election.

Coronavirus surges across US Midwest

By Bryan Dyne, 30 September 2020

The sharpest rise in new cases is in Wisconsin, where nearly one in five of those tested for the coronavirus tests positive.

Judge orders release of recordings in Breonna Taylor grand jury proceedings

By Kevin Reed, 30 September 2020

The Kentucky Attorney General's exoneration of the police officers who shot Taylor is being exposed as part of a cover-up that began when she was killed in her apartment on March 13.

Desperation swells among millions of unemployed in the US as layoffs mount and aid dries up

By Jacob Crosse, 30 September 2020

Audits conducted within the last month in California, Wisconsin, Florida and Nevada reveal that millions of calls to unemployment agencies have gone unanswered.

“They view soldiers as expendable”: Mother speaks out on son’s suicide at Fort Hood Army base

By Chase Lawrence, 30 September 2020

Patrician Troyan explained that her son, Pfc. Logan Castello, was isolated and neglected by the Army before his tragic death at the Texas military base in late 2019.

A wave of teacher protests spark staffing shortages and school closures across the US

By Emma Arceneaux, 30 September 2020

In addition to protests and work actions, states across the US are facing severe teacher and substitute shortages.

Teacher protests surge in Southern California as schools reopen

By Kimie Saito and Marc Wells, 29 September 2020

In Orange County, California, educators in at least four school districts are taking part in courageous protests against returning to work under unsafe conditions in defiance of their own unions’ recommendations.

New wildfires cause mass evacuations in California’s Napa Valley

By Rafael Azul, 29 September 2020

There are currently 27 major wildfires in California. In some areas, evacuations are barely staying ahead of the spreading flames.

With phoney promises of “job security,” Unifor rams through Ford Canada contract

By Roger Jordan, 29 September 2020

Despite the extremely limited information provided in Unifor’s “highlights” brochure, many of the union’s key arguments in favour of the deal have proven to be self-serving and false.

US military suicides spike 20 percent in 2020

By Chase Lawrence, 29 September 2020

US Army leaders have suggested that the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic has played a part in the sharp rise in suicides this year.

Jacobin magazine pleads with Biden and the Democrats to fight Trump

By Genevieve Leigh, 29 September 2020

One could hardly have a more inane analysis of American politics than that offered by Jacobin, which explains the unwillingness of the Democrats to oppose Trump’s coup plotting as the product of “learned helplessness.”

Police attack protests in Honduras, Mexico and Chile while labor unrest spreads in Brazil and Argentina

Workers Struggles: The Americas

29 September 2020

Protesting health care workers in Chile and teachers in Mexico faced police repression while call center workers in Cordoba, Argentina and transit workers in Recife, Brazil have launched strikes.

The world has reached the grim milestone of one million COVID-19 deaths

By Benjamin Mateus, 28 September 2020

With some 33 million infected out of nearly eight billion people, “herd immunity” remains a distant prospect and winter could bring conditions for a rapid resurgence of the pandemic.

Vote “No” on the Detroit Federation of Teachers contract!

Unite educators, students and parents to protect our lives against COVID-19

By the Detroit Rank-and-File Educators Safety Committee, 28 September 2020

The Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) and the Detroit Federation of Teachers (DFT) is seeking to ram through a one-year contract as part of the preparation for a return to full in-person learning.

US governors told in February that pandemic would get “much worse,” but did not alert public

By Kevin Reed, 28 September 2020

In a secret meeting, 25 US governors were told: “The coronavirus outbreak is going to get much, much worse before it gets better.”

US political warfare escalates with New York Times release of Trump tax returns

By Patrick Martin, 28 September 2020

While it is not clear whether Trump is even nominally a billionaire, he is certainly one of the great tax cheats of the 21st century.

Police respond to demonstrations across the US with vicious assaults on protesters and journalists

By Jacob Crosse, 28 September 2020

Abetted by the police, far-right Trump supporters, Proud Boys and neo-Nazis assaulted and provoked anti-police violence protesters throughout the weekend.

Michigan State University pushes forward with football amid a mass spike in COVID-19 cases

By Luke Galvin, 28 September 2020

Since August 24, there have been 1,250 cases of COVID-19 linked to the reopening of the university.

Trump’s Operation Legend prepares local police forces to suppress opposition

By Alex Findijs, 28 September 2020

Tens of millions of dollars have been provided to local police forces to hire more officers, upgrade crowd control equipment and develop surveillance operations.

Nearly 40,000 US airline workers could lose jobs on October 1

By Jerry White, 28 September 2020

The new job cuts come on top of the 100,000 temporary furloughs and forced retirements and buyouts implemented by United, American, Delta and other major US carriers.

US hits leading Chinese chip maker

By Nick Beams, 28 September 2020

The latest decision instigated by the Pentagon is aimed at crippling China’s ability to make high-tech advances.

More evidence of management spying on Amazon workers’ political activities

By Tom Carter, 28 September 2020

A whistleblower inside Amazon sent a message last week to a number of internal company listservs, warning fellow workers that the company is monitoring opposition on those forums.

PG&E shuts off power to tens of thousands as West Coast wildfires continue to rage

By Kevin Martinez, 28 September 2020

The shutoff of power on Sunday came in advance of an expected heat wave which will heighten the danger of more fires.

Is Trump preparing an “October Surprise”?

By Bill Van Auken, 28 September 2020

With the US presidential election barely five weeks away, Washington is stoking conflicts across the globe, first and foremost with China.

Washington D.C. proposes to remove the names of Jefferson, Franklin and others from public places

By Dominic Gustavo, 28 September 2020

While the mayor of the US capital prepares to delete the names of revolutionaries and abolitionists, she recently renamed a building after disgraced former mayor Marion Barry.

As Trump nominates ultra-right jurist

Biden downplays danger of election coup

By Patrick Martin, 26 September 2020

In an interview with MSNBC, the Democratic presidential nominee sought to spread complacency about Trump’s threat of dictatorship.

“State of Emergency” declared in three states as protests continue over cover-up of Breonna Taylor slaying

By Jacob Crosse, 26 September 2020

Courageous multiracial demonstrators continue to defy curfews, police rampages and vehicle assaults in cities across the US to protest the state-sanctioned murder.

Detroit students stage sickout in opposition to the district’s back-to-school plan

By Genevieve Leigh, 26 September 2020

While the demands laid out by the students are limited to immediate measures, there is no doubt that they are motivated by much broader issues.

“Everyone I work with thinks that it is absurd to put us all in harm’s way”

Tennessee parents and educators speak out against unsafe school openings

By the World Socialist Web Site Educators Newsletter, 26 September 2020

The teachers and parents often shared similar complaints about the unsafe conditions in schools and pressure to accept the reopening policies.

Pennsylvania nursing students demand refunds, financial support due to COVID policies

By Alex Johnson, 26 September 2020

Students say their calls for adequate support and transparency, quality education, reduced costs and licensing accommodations have been met with indifference and hostility from university administrators.

White House nears antitrust lawsuit against Google while advancing new censorship rules for social media

By Kevin Reed, 26 September 2020

Any antitrust action against Google by the US government, whether focused on the search or advertising aspects of the tech firm’s business, has nothing to do with stopping anti-competitive practices or protecting the rights of consumers.

US college football season set to begin early November

By Andy Thompson, 26 September 2020

After an earlier decision to postpone the season, the Pac-12 football conference has announced games will begin November 6th.

Western US wildfires point to worsening trends of global warming

By Alexa Castro, 26 September 2020

Since the beginning of 2020, California has seen approximately 3.6 million acres burn—a testament to the growing climate crisis.

Canadian PM Trudeau provides political cover for criminal back-to-work drive

By Roger Jordan, 26 September 2020

The Liberal government is determined to “reopen” the economy, even as it concedes that Canada is in the midst of a “second wave” of the pandemic that threatens to be worse than last spring.

After the exoneration of Breonna Taylor’s killers: The way forward in the fight against police violence

By Niles Niemuth, 26 September 2020

The ubiquity of police violence in the US, with approximately 1,000 people killed every year, is bound up with the extreme growth of social inequality and class tensions.

Lessons of the University of Michigan graduate student strike

By the International Youth and Students for Social Equality (US), 26 September 2020

Throughout the course of the strike, many students admirably asserted that their fight was not only about the health and safety of themselves, but of the community as a whole.

Metropolitan Opera announces cancellation of entire 2020–2021 season

By Fred Mazelis, 26 September 2020

Management is demanding major concessions from its musicians, who have been furloughed without pay since March.

Protests erupt over whitewash of police murder of Breonna Taylor in Kentucky

By Niles Niemuth, 24 September 2020

Neither of the two officers who fired the fusillade of 22 bullets that killed 26-year-old Breonna Taylor in her Louisville, Kentucky home were charged by the grand jury convened by state authorities.

Senate confirmation hearing for Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf reveals bipartisan support

By Jacob Crosse, 24 September 2020

Democratic as well as Republican senators thanked Wolf for his “service,” neglecting to question him on unconstitutional kidnappings, the mass incarceration of immigrants, and the state assassination of a Portland protester.

Homelessness to soar as UK eviction ban ends

By Julia Callaghan, 24 September 2020

On Monday, the Conservative government gave the green light for those suffering the worst financial effects of the pandemic to be forced out of their homes.

Germany’s school openings throw fuel onto the pandemic’s fire

By Marianne Arens, 24 September 2020

Only five of the almost 300 German administrative districts currently report no new infections, as the number of people with COVID-19 rises rapidly.

The Senate holds a COVID-19 hearing as US tops 200,000 COVID-19 deaths

By Benjamin Mateus, 24 September 2020

The number of individuals infected with COVID-19 is now more than 32 million globally, of which almost one million have perished.

Teachers across the US engage in sickout strikes to close schools

By Emma Arceneaux, 24 September 2020

This week, educators in South Carolina, Florida, Louisiana, and Wisconsin have responded to the unfolding crisis with sickouts, in some cases compelling entire school districts to suspend in-person instruction.

“We are just numbers on a spreadsheet”

Detroit students organize protest over school reopening plans

By Genevieve Leigh, 24 September 2020

Students are organizing a virtual “sick out,” where students do not log in to online learning for the entire day, to call attention to their demands.

“Lear is hell”: Workers speak out as COVID-19 outbreak at Indiana auto parts plant worsens

By Marcus Day, 24 September 2020

The WSWS recently spoke with two workers from Lear’s Hammond, Indiana, plant who had tested positive for COVID-19.

A twenty-year-old student dies from COVID-19 at California University of Pennsylvania

By Samuel Davidson, 24 September 2020

California University of Pennsylvania student Jamain Stephens Jr. died September 9 from a blood clot in his heart after he contracted COVID-19.

Las Vegas health reports detail spread of COVID-19 in casinos

By Adam Mclean, 24 September 2020

The vast majority of exposures in the Las Vegas area, where over 1,350 people have already died, occurred in casinos and resort hotels.

UK: Labour schools spokesperson confirms bi-partisan “malign neglect” policy on COVID-19

By Julie Hyland, 24 September 2020

Remarks by Labour Party education spokesperson Kate Green and the panicked response of her frontbench colleagues have underscored the policy of “malign neglect” shared by Tory and Labour alike on COVID-19.

Canada’s military forced to admit growing number of far-right extremists in armed forces

By Matthew Richter, 24 September 2020

In July, a heavily-armed Canadian Armed Forces’ Ranger crashed through the gates of the temporary residence of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in what had all the hallmarks of an assassination attempt.

As Creek Fire become the largest in California history, farmworkers continue to labor without protection from smoke

By Aditya Veeraiah and Evan Winters, 24 September 2020

Even though plans were announced over a month ago to distribute hundreds of thousands of N95 masks to Fresno area farmworkers, few have received these masks, which provide a high level of protection against both air pollution and COVID-19.

Further revelations about sterilizations and medical malpractice at ICE detention facility in Georgia

By Meenakshi Jagadeesan, 24 September 2020

The latest revelations, including the naming of the doctor who performed them, strengthens the account given in a recent whistleblower complaint, while giving lie to the US government’s dismissals.

Trump’s coup d’état election

By Joseph Kishore and David North, 24 September 2020

Trump has publicly declared that he will not transfer power peacefully if he loses the November 3 election.

Assange’s partner Stella Moris calls for Australian government to intervene in his defence

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 September 2020

“This is not something that the Australian government can just hide its head in the sand and say ‘nothing to do with us.’”

Video footage exposes police shooting of 13-year-old autistic boy in Salt Lake City

By Niles Niemuth, 23 September 2020

While Linden Cameron somehow survived being shot 11 times, police in the US are still on track to kill nearly 1,000 people, a grim toll they have exacted every year since 2015.

The CDC retracts its guidance that stipulated the airborne danger of the coronavirus

By Benjamin Mateus, 23 September 2020

Though the CDC said it had erroneously published the unvetted draft, the political fallout faced by the CDC suggests it was a political maneuver to save face.

Hundreds of Kenosha, Wisconsin teachers call in sick to force schools to close

By Renae Cassimeda and Evan Blake, 23 September 2020

Starting Monday, 276 Kenosha teachers engaged in a sickout strike in opposition to increasing COVID-19 outbreaks and deadly conditions in the school district.

Trump delivers anti-China tirade to United Nations

By Bill Van Auken, 23 September 2020

The annual opening of the UN General Assembly was held under the shadow of the global COVID-19 pandemic and the growing threat of imperialist war.

Facebook plans political censorship in anticipation of “chaos” and “violence” in the 2020 US elections

By Kevin Reed, 23 September 2020

Facebook is working with “world-class military scenario planners” to prepare for civil unrest in the US and “restrict the circulation of content” during the November elections.

Democrats capitulate as Republicans secure votes to install far-right justice on Supreme Court

By Barry Grey and Jacob Crosse, 23 September 2020

For all their bluster, the Democrats were focused on preventing a plunge in the stock market by reaching a government funding deal with the Republicans before the September 30 deadline.

Massachusetts education commissioner demands “low-risk” districts resume in-person learning

By Will McCallis, 23 September 2020

The letter warns that non-compliance with the “school reopening guidance" will be met with a potential loss of state funds.

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.

Two workers killed in fire at North Carolina paper mill

By Cordell Gascoigne, 23 September 2020

Two contract workers at the Evergreen Packaging paper mill in Canton, North Carolina tragically died Monday in a fire of still unexplained origin during maintenance operations.

After ordering Ford Canada workers to ignore strike deadline, Unifor announces job-cutting agreement

By Roger Jordan, 23 September 2020

The Unifor president refused to provide any details about the contract—signalling that the union has accepted further concessions and job cuts.

Trump on coronavirus pandemic: “Virtually nobody” affected

By Joseph Kishore—SEP candidate for US President, 23 September 2020

The indifference expressed by Trump to death on a mass scale expresses not only his personal outlook but the social policy of the ruling class.

Global banking system a network of criminality

By Nick Beams, 23 September 2020

The notification of suspicious activity that banks are required to file with the US government is not a means of preventing crime, but of facilitating it.

The global campaign to reopen schools drives COVID-19 deaths past one million

By Genevieve Leigh, 22 September 2020

Underlying the reckless drive to reopen schools is a broader policy of “herd immunity” adopted by every major capitalist country around the world.

Report documents criminality and corruption at heart of global banking system

By Barry Grey, 22 September 2020

The report documents the role that major banks knowingly play in laundering trillions of dollars in dirty money from terrorist organizations, drug cartels and assorted international financial criminals.

Spike in Canada’s COVID-19 infections exposes criminality of back-to-work, back-to-school drive

By Roger Jordan, 22 September 2020

The dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases is the direct outcome of the ruling elite’s criminal back-to-work and back-to-school policies, which are aimed at guaranteeing corporate profits regardless of the cost in human lives.

US escalates military intervention in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 22 September 2020

The bolstering of the US force with another 100 troops, armored vehicles, and air power heightens the threat of confrontation between the world’s two biggest nuclear powers.

Trump to nominate new Supreme Court justice as early as Friday

By Jacob Crosse, 22 September 2020

Ignoring Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s pleas to wait until after the election, Trump has pledged to nominate a women by Saturday.

Louisville police chief declares “state of emergency” in advance of state’s decision on charges against policemen who killed Breonna Taylor

By Kevin Reed, 22 September 2020

Federal police agencies have been requested by U.S. Attorney Russell Coleman to provide protection for the courthouse and three other buildings in downtown Louisville in anticipation of protests this week.

Youth in the US most likely to be low-paid ‘essential’ workers

By Melody Isley, 22 September 2020

Adding insult to injury, students, many of whom who are frontline workers and therefore unable to escape exposure, are being blamed for the explosion of cases on college campuses.

Opposition mounts at the University of Michigan as COVID-19 outbreaks emerge on campus

By Jesse Thomas, 22 September 2020

The possibility that the university administration delayed the public announcement of the cases until after the strike was officially smothered cannot be discounted.

Devastation left in the wake of Hurricanes Sally and Laura along the US Gulf Coast

By J. L'Heureau, 22 September 2020

The region stretching from Texas to Florida remains locked in the crosshairs of a historically overactive hurricane season.

160 UIC staff strike

22 September 2020

“As COVID spreads, autoworkers lives are in danger!”

Fiat Chrysler worker describes rapid abandonment of safety measures after return work

By a Fiat Chrysler Jefferson North Assembly worker, 22 September 2020

A member of the FCA Jefferson North Assembly Rank and File Safety Committee describes management’s flouting of safety protocols at the factory.

The New York Times and Nikole Hannah-Jones abandon key claims of the 1619 Project

By Tom Mackaman and David North, 22 September 2020

The Times has abandoned, without any public announcement or explanation, the central thesis that 1619, not 1776, was the “true founding” of the United States.

Ten thousand Quebec home daycare workers strike; Mexican professors demand back wages

Workers Struggles: The Americas

22 September 2020

Quebec home daycare workers began an unlimited strike Monday while instructors in Zacatecas, Mexico began a strike at the state’s 43 Bachelors College campuses on September 17.

Supreme Court fight deepens political crisis surrounding US elections

By Patrick Martin, 21 September 2020

The death of liberal justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has created a vacancy on the highest US judicial panel that President Trump aims to fill with an ultra-right nominee.

President Trump gives preliminary approval to takeover of TikTok by Oracle and Walmart

By Kevin Reed, 21 September 2020

In an unprecedented act of imperialist piracy, the assets of Chinese-owned video sharing app TikTok are being handed over to Oracle, Walmart and group of private investors.

San Diego County seeks to exclude university outbreaks to undercount coronavirus cases

By Melody Isley, 21 September 2020

As COVID-19 cases skyrocket, San Diego County supervisors are lobbying to artificially lower case numbers by excluding the recent outbreak at San Diego State University.

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.

Who runs the University of Illinois?

By Brian Brown and James Martin, 21 September 2020

An examination of the university's Board of Trustees shows the political forces arrayed against the nearly 5,000 nurses and university workers who have gone on strike.

SEIU calls off health care strike in Minnesota after Allina hospital system threatens legal action

By Jonas Boquist, 21 September 2020

The cancellation of the strike comes as 4,000 workers at the University of Illinois at Chicago in SEIU Local 73 remain on picket lines in Chicago, Peoria, Rockford and Urbana.

Dry weather continues to fuel historic wildfires in California, rains bring new dangers to Pacific Northwest

By Kevin Martinez, 21 September 2020

While fires continue to burn, destroying homes and displacing thousands, the Democrats and Republicans each seek to pass the blame onto each other.

Los Angeles educators form rank-and-file safety committee to oppose unsafe school reopening

By the Los Angeles Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee, 21 September 2020

The Los Angeles Educators Rank-and-File Safety Committee has been established to protect the district’s students, teachers and staff from the deadly virus.

Los Angeles sheriff terrorizes residents and attacks critics following shooting of two deputies

By John Andrews, 21 September 2020

Los Angeles Sheriff Alex Villanueva continues to lay blame on demonstrators and critics for the shooting of two deputies one week ago by a still unidentified assailant.

New York City school bus drivers and educators face common struggle against unsafe openings

By A. Woodson and Steve Light, 21 September 2020

School bus drivers will begin transporting thousands of special education children today, as the nation’s largest school district prepares to restart in-person instruction by September 29.

With Canadian Detroit Three auto contracts set to expire, Unifor rushes to reach concessionary “pattern” settlement

By Carl Bronski, 21 September 2020

If Unifor does call a strike, its aim will be to allow workers to let off steam, while the union continues backroom talks with Ford.

As COVID-19 deaths approach one million

WHO condemns governments’ failure to prepare for pandemic

By Bryan Dyne, 21 September 2020

The pandemic has exposed the contradiction between the highly integrated nature of modern society and the outmoded and irrational nation-state system of capitalism.