Five-Tidbit Friday: October 2, 2015

This is the third installment of Five Tidbit Friday, and this week we’ve got news items ranging from near to far and back again.

  • CANCER WALK Congratulations to participants of this year’s cancer walk! The roughly thirteen thousand participants this year have raised nearly $400,000 for cancer research and care. 20150927_093855.jpg

  • RETIREE BENEFITS in the NEWS You may remember the now-defeated House Bill H59, which was designed to cut pension benefits from State Employees. That bill did not pass. However, we’ve been watching a similar situation in Rhode Island for employees of the state there, to better understand potential threats to public employee retirement plans. This week, the New York Times describes how that dispute played out, and the settlement between unions and the State.
  • FREE SPEECH at WORK In national news, an NLRB complaint against Quicken Loans could redefine the rules of free speech in the workplace, reports the Detroit Free Press. The case is likely to have implications for social media. The ruling is expected to uphold current standards, including that "employees have a ... right to discuss wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment with fellow employees, as well as with non-employees, such as union representatives." Meanwhile, the US Department of Labor has continued its emphasis on employee rights with a Worker Voice Summit, which will underscore the value of worker organizing and collective bargaining, as a new #starttheconvo initiative invites frontline voices from around the country into that conversation.
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    INNOVATIONS in HEALTHCARE The Legal Services Corporation recently announced that Community Legal Aid in Worcester, Massachusetts will receive a 24-month $209,524 Pro Bono Innovation Fund grant to develop a partnership with UMass Memorial Medical Center. The model will address legal needs that can negatively impact the health of low-income and minority communities and interfere with healthcare providers’ ability to improve the health of these patients.
  • MOOSE! We hear that a moose has been recently seen on our local Worcester streets. Drive safe!

See you here next Friday. Hope you have a great weekend.