Thursday, July 2, 2015

Philly's schools are in crisis. Meanwhile, mega-nonprofits like U. Penn and Jefferson pay next to nothing in property taxes. Join us in the fight to make mega-nonprofits pay their fair share!

posted by gwen at 10:04pm
Tuesday, April 14, 2015

On Wednesday, April 14th, at 3:00 pm, Jobs with Justice, Philly Coalition of Labor Union Women, and SLAP @ Penn will be joining Fight for 15’s national day of action. We'll join community members, fast food workers, clergy, and working families standing together to demand that fast food franchises pay their employees enough to live--at least $15 an hour.

McDonald’s is already feeling the pressure. Earlier this month, they tried to undermine the national day of action by enacting a slight, stingy pay raise--nowhere close to what these workers need. Let's keep the fight hot and let these fast food corporations know that their workers deserve a living wage, not pocket change!

We need you out there with us! Here's how to join:

• At 3 pm, we’ll rally at the McDonald’s at 40th and Walnut, one of the busiest McDonald's franchises in the city.
• At 4 pm, we’ll start marching down Walnut towards the citywide convergence site at 30th & Market.
• If you can’t make it at 3 pm, you can still make the citywide convergence at 30th and Market; it's set to begin at 4:30 pm.

Can we count on you to be there? RSVP on Facebook today!

posted by gwen at 1:17am
Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Help us get one step closer to convincing U. Penn to pay its fair share! Sign our petition to Amy Gutmann, U. Penn's president.

posted by gwen at 3:51am
Wednesday, January 14, 2015

What version of Martin Luther King, Jr. do you remember learning in grade school?

If your experience was anything like mine, it was a sanitized King story, heavy on children holding hands and light on the measured, strategic brilliance. It was also an isolated, finished King story: a "great man" narrative in the distant past, where the multitude of faces marching behind and beside him are barely noticed or acknowledged.

 But the real, extraordinary story of King isn't just the story of an individual. It's the story of an entire movement for social justice, a radical one driven by thousands upon thousands who risked, and continue to risk, their well-being and even their lives to organize for a better world. It's the story of a fight for equality that continues today. King's true greatness lay in his ability to understand, articulate, and live that vision.

This MLK Day, I hope you'll join us and our many allies on the MLK Day of Action, Resistance, and Empowerment March (MLK DARE), as we live that fight in our world today. We'll march for an end to stop and frisk, a $15 minimum wage, the right to organize, and a fully funded and democratically controlled school system.

Monday, January 19
440 N Broad. Street

1:30 pm rally
March begins 2:00 pm

RSVP on Facebook

 King told us that the arc of the moral universe curves towards justice, but he also made it clear that the arc curves only because we organize together to bend it. This coming Monday, let's honor King's legacy by continuing that work.

posted by gwen at 5:44pm
Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Nine days ago, the Corbett-controlled School Reform Commission sunk to a new low. In a surprise blow to students, teachers, parents, and community activists, they unilaterally declared the contract of PFT 3 (Philly's teacher union) canceled, leaving our schools vulnerable to even more dangerous cuts.

When the SRC meets next Thursday, thousands of us will be at their door for the "Turn Up for Truth Rally,"calling out Corbett and his SRC cronies and letting them know that this callous move cannot stand.

The forces behind this move know that no real Philadelphian would approve of this transparent stunt. So they've paid a guerrilla marketing firm to hire mercenary "counter-protesters" (see ad to right, courtesy of at $40 to $120 a pop.

We can't let passers-by and the media think these people are for real. So Philly JwJ will be there at the rally, holding a counter counter-protest. We'll be birddogging the "faux-testers" with identifying signs so no one mistakes them for anything more than hired actors.

Philadelphia Jobs with Justice Counter-Counter-Protest
Thursday, October 16
4 pm, 440 N. Broad Street
(@ PFT "Turn Up For Truth" Rally, 440 Broad Street)

RSVP on Facebook

Hope to see you there. Philly schools need our help now more than ever.

P.S.: We're making signs now, but if you have the time, we could use your help! Bring posters with or shaped like arrows. (Make sure the language identifies the person as "hired counter-protestor"--we don't want anyone to get confused and think we're calling our allies fake.)


posted by gwen at 7:17pm | tags: education
Thursday, August 7, 2014

Philly Jobs with Justice's Saturday, May 31st: community forum “U. Penn: Is It Paying Its Fair Share?” at Monumental Baptist Church on 50th & Locust drew nearly a hundred neighbors and allies. After testimony from PCCY executive director Donna Cooper, long-time Philadelphia resident Charles Clark, and U. Penn professor Mary Summers, attendees broke out into small groups to discuss the issue of U. Penn giving back to the community through PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) payments for schools and essential services.  After coming together and listening to each other's stories, the response was overwhelming: U. Penn isn’t paying its fair share, and PILOTs could begin to remedy that.

Hundreds of neighbors have signed petitions

Since May, more than a dozen Jobs with Justice volunteers have spent weekends knocking on doors in West and Southwest Philly, asking community members to sign on in calling on Amy Gutmann to make U. Penn pay its fair share-- and hundreds of neighbors already have.

Services in the city of Philadelphia are being slashed, and our communities are suffering because of it. Are we to go without quality services while those at U. Penn not pay taxes? Of course not. We are all in this city together - we all take, and we should all give back, U. Penn included.

posted by gwen at 7:16pm
Thursday, May 15, 2014

We don't need to tell you that our city is in crisis. Our schools are broke. The city can't afford to plow all our streets. Budget cuts are still forcing fire station blackouts. Many of our public sector workers have been without a contract for years.

U. Penn LogoMeanwhile, one of my neighbors out in West Philly is thriving. The University of Pennsylvania has an endowment of $7.7 billion. Its president, Amy Gutman, makes over $2 million each year.

U. Penn owns 992 acres of prime real estate. It uses our firefighters, our police, our sewers and our streets… but doesn't have to pay property taxes. So we have a question:

U. Penn: Is It Paying Its Fair Share?
Community Forum
3 pm, Saturday, May 31st
Monumental Baptist Church @ 50th & Locust

RSVP on Facebook


As you probably guessed, it's a bit of a leading question. of course U. Penn isn't paying its fair share. It's one of only two Ivies that refuse to make PILOT contributions-- voluntary payments to the city for public schools and services.

Well, we think it's time to pay up. For months, we've been researching other PILOT programs, organizing with allies, educating politicians, listening to local leaders, and building support for this campaign. PILOT payment campaigns have worked and brought in millions for schools and public services in other cities. We can win this. But we can't do it without you.

So please, make sure to save the date. Want to get more involved? We have a big summer planned, and need volunteers to pull it off! Email me at if you think you might be able to put in some time and help us make Philly a better place.

posted by gwen at 6:33pm
Tuesday, May 13, 2014

We need you bright and early this Thursday!

Thursday morning, the fast food workers fight comes to Philadelphia. Fast food workers from chains like McDonald's, Burger King, Popeye's, Subway, KFC, Wendy's, and Dunkin' Donuts are planning Philly's first ever fast food walkout!

Fast Food Walkout!
Thursday, 5/15

8am: Strike line at Broad and Girard, followed by march
9:30am: Rally at McDonald's at Broad and Arch

Let's end poverty pay. Fast food corporations need to hear from workers and from all of us that workers deserve $15 an hour.

Can you help the day after the strike as we join strikers returning to work, making sure their bosses treat them fairly and respectfully? Write our friends at to join a walkback team!

posted by gwen at 8:53pm
Tuesday, April 8, 2014

It's hard to believe it, but this year Philly JwJ is turning fifteen. That's fifteen years of fighting for worker justice-- and we think it's an occasion to celebrate with old friends.

So on May 7th, we'll be using our annual Solidarity Awards dinner to celebrate our founding supporters.

Jobs with Justice Solidarity Awards Dinner
May 7th, 5:30 pm
1315 Spruce Street, Philadelphia

honoring some of our founding member organizations:

• AFSCME 1199c
• CWA District 2-13
• SEIU 32BJ Local 1201
• USW 10-1

…and two special individuals:

• Liz McElroy, former Philadelphia Jobs with Justice labor co-chair 
• John Braxton, Philadelphia Jobs with Justice founder

We hope you'll join us as we celebrate fifteen years of fighting for justice!

posted by gwen at 10:06pm
Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Excited for next week's labor law reception, featuring Craig Becker? We are too!

 The reception will be hosted by Cohen, Placitella & Roth, PC in Suite 2900 of 2001 Market Street, Philadelphia, on Thursday, February 13th from 5:30 to 7:30 PM.

 Not a labor lawyer? Me neither. 

 Don't be intimidated--like all Philly JwJ parties, it's a friendly, fun evening with snacks, beer, and wine. And it's interesting stuff!

 Remember when Congress conservatives blocked all the nominees to the NLRB, trying to shut down labor justice? Remember when Obama went and appointed some great folks during recess? Remember how conservatives went bonkers and sued the NLRB?

 Craig Becker was one of those recess appointments!

 The Supreme Court is hearing the conservatives' case this year, and the decision will deeply impact workers. How will it impact workers? I have a vague idea-- but I bet Craig Becker can explain it a lot better than I can.

 Individual tickets are available for a suggested donation of $75 each (sliding scale for low/fixed income folks). If you'd like to attend, just reply to this email and let me know how many tickets you would like to purchase.

Hope you can make it!


PS: While we're on the subject of labor law, local charters like Khepera are breaking it. First they stalled on union negotiations by flaking out on bargaining sessions; now they can't even be bothered to come to the table. 

Want to support hardworking teachers? Show your solidarity-- sign this petition urging Khepra to return to the table and bargain in good faith!

posted by gwen at 6:04pm