All posts by Murphy Institute

Can the Bay Area Tech Economy Embrace Equity Before It’s Too Late?

Featured photo credit: SEIU-USWW

By Chris Schildt, PolicyLink

This post originally appeared at New Economy Week 2015: From Austerity to Prosperity.

Uber recently purchased one of the largest office spaces in downtown Oakland, California, with plans to move3,000 of its workers there by 2017. For a city facing a housing crisis and rapid displacement of Black families and low-income communities, many fear this act will accelerate gentrification pressures. It has also led to some cautious optimism for an opportunity to make Oakland a leader in what Mayor Libby Schaaf has called techquity: “fostering our local technology sector’s growth so it leads to shared prosperity.”

Tech companies can play a role in advancing an equitable economy, but they will first have to confront a deeply inequitable status quo. The San Francisco Bay Area has one of the highest levels of inequality of any region in the country, and it is growing at an alarming pace. Unequal access to business and job opportunities have deepened racial economic gaps – Black and Latino workers earn a median wage that is $10 an hour less than White workers in the Bay Area, and these racial inequities exist across all education levels. The tech-driven “innovation economy” can reverse these trends. But to understand how, it’s important to examine how the innovation economy works. Continue reading Can the Bay Area Tech Economy Embrace Equity Before It’s Too Late?

Bringing Neighborhoods Wealth — Not Gentrification

By Marjorie Kelly and Sarah McKinley 

This article was originally featured at Yes! Magazine and adapted from Cities Building Community Wealth, a project of The Democracy Collaborative, for New Economy Week.

In cities across the nation, a few enjoy rising affluence while many struggle to get by.

An August 2015 study by The Century Foundation reported that—after a dramatic decline in concentrated poverty between 1990 and 2000—poverty has since reconcentrated. Nationwide, the number of people  living in high-poverty ghettos and slums has nearly doubled since 2000. This situation is created in part by the practices of traditional economic development, which prioritize corporate subsidy after corporate subsidy over the needs of the local economy. Current trends threaten to worsen, unless we can answer the design challenge before us.

Can we create an economic system—beginning at the local level—that builds the wealth and prosperity of everyone? Continue reading Bringing Neighborhoods Wealth — Not Gentrification

2016 Hillman Prize for Excellence in Journalism in The Public Interest — Call for Entries Now Open

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The Sidney Hillman Foundation is now accepting nominations for the 2016 Hillman Prize honoring excellence in journalism in the public interest.

The Hillman Prize seeks out top investigative reporting that draws attention to social or economic injustice and hopefully leads to corrective measures.The goal is to recognize discernment of a significant news story, resourcefulness and courage in reporting, skill in relating the story and the impact of the coverage.

The received-by deadline for all submissions will be January 30, 2016. Nominations can be submitted here.

The Sidney Hillman Foundation has sought to illuminate the great issues of the day—from the search for a basis for lasting peace, to the need for better housing, medical care, and employment security for all people, the promotion of civil liberties and the battle against discrimination based on race, nationality, or religion.

Prof. Kafui Attoh Investigates the On-Demand Mobile Service Sector

Dr. Kafui Attoh, Assistant Professor of Urban Studies at the Murphy Institute, has been awarded a grant from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. His project is called Economic Inequality in the Driver’s Seat: Household Budgets in the On-Demand Mobile Services Sector, and it aims to get a snapshot of what work in the On-Demand Mobile Service Sector looks like — and what it means for how on-demand workers navigate the broader economy.

To get that snapshot, Prof. Attoh, along with collaborator Katie Wells, will examine contingent and part-time on-demand work in mobile transportation, hospitality, home services, delivery and logistics services, such as Uber, Seamless, Taskrabbit, and AirBnB.

Professor Attoh explains that “the project starts from the presumption that the growth of the on-demand mobile service sector…raises both important and timely questions for researchers concerned with the future of employment. Our study examines the household balance sheets of contingent workers employed by Uber Transportation, one of the fastest growing on-demand mobile services. By looking at the household balance sheets of Uber drivers, we will be able to examine the financial costs, benefits, and challenges facing this new type of worker, as well as the burdens and benefits such work creates for these workers’ households. This project poses two questions:

“How does contingent part-time work for Uber affect the stability and health of household finances and the allocation of household responsibilities, and what does the emergence of the on-demand mobile services sector mean for understanding inequitable growth in the U.S.?

NYS AFL-CIO Hiring Temporary Field Representative (NYC)

TEMPORARY FIELD REPRESENTATIVE
REGION 10 MANHATTAN OFFICE
(SERVICES REQUIRED IMMEDIATELY)

It is anticipated that services for this position are expected to last until July 2016.

Position Summary:

The Field Representative monitors and enforces the contract, linking members, division leaders, and stewards, and PEF departments. He/she will resolve members’ problems using the contract, state and federal laws, and union organizing principles, and will prepare and present improper practice cases before PERB. He/she conducts training for stewards and union activists.

Qualifications:

The successful candidate will have experience in collective bargaining as the lead negotiator or chair of the negotiating team. As well as background in grievance processing, arbitration proceedings, labor relations, knowledge of Civil Service Law, and of State operations. Must have excellent communications skills and be highly organized. College degree in labor relations or related field is preferred.

Minimum Salary:

$56, 633, plus downstate staff adjustment of $3, 774, with a monthly transportation allowance of $559/month and excellent employer paid benefits. This position is covered by a collective bargaining agreement. Services required immediately.

Send letter of application and resume to:

Office of Human Resources
NYS Public Employees Federation
1168-70 Troy-Schenectady Road
PO Box 12414
Albany, NY 12212-2414

Or email: HR@PEF.org

An Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. Women, minorities and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

NYS AFL-CIO Hiring Temporary Field Representative (Utica, NY)

TEMPORARY FIELD REPRESENTATIVE
REGION 6 UTICA OFFICE
(SERVICES REQUIRED IMMEDIATELY)

It is anticipated that services for this position are expected to last until April 2016.

Position Summary:

The Field Representative monitors and enforces the contract, linking members, division leaders, and stewards, and PEF departments. He/she will resolve members’ problems using the contract, state and federal laws, and union organizing principles, and will prepare and present improper practice cases before PERB. He/she conducts training for stewards
and union activists.

Qualifications:

The successful candidate will have experience in collective bargaining as the lead negotiator or chair of the negotiating team. As well as background in grievance processing, arbitration proceedings, labor relations, knowledge of Civil Service Law, and of State operations. Must have excellent communications skills and be highly organized. College degree in labor relations or related field is preferred.

Minimum Salary:

$56, 633, with a monthly transportation allowance of $530/month and excellent employer paid benefits. This position is
covered by a collective bargaining agreement. Services required immediately.

Send letter of application and resume to:

Office of Human Resources
NYS Public Employees Federation
1168-70 Troy-Schenectady Road
PO Box 12414
Albany, NY 12212-2414

Or email: HR@PEF.org

An Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. Women, minorities and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply