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Fight for $15

Union activists want Wal-Marts in Tampa Bay region to pay price for offshoring security costs

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Although retail giant Wal-Mart is known for low prices, it’s increasingly earning a reputation for offshoring security costs to local law enforcement agencies. Earlier this year, the Tampa Bay Times reported that law enforcement in four counties logged 16,800 calls to Wal-Marts in one year alone. It’s much the same around the nation. An Arizona Republic investigation published this month revealed that between 2011-2016, three of the top five addresses to which Phoenix police officers responded were Wal-Mart stores. In Beech Grove, Indiana, city officials in 2015 declared Wal-Mart a public…

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Activists push progressive agenda for 2016 Legislative Session

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

On the eve of this year’s Legislative Session, Tampa Bay area activists took to St. Pete City Hall to drum up support for a variety of legislative priorities. Backed by more than a dozen supporters waving signs, the most immediate push was the Fight for $15 movement to raise the minimum wage. Putting a new face to the fight was St. Pete’s newest City Council member, Lisa Wheeler-Brown. “I live in midtown where people work hard, and they deserve a…

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Community activists rally for Tampa worker who lost home to fire

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

As the Fight for $15 movement continues to gain traction across the nation, one local activist leading the charge was devastated early Monday morning when his home caught fire. Carlton Alexander was at in his Tampa home with his fiancé, her daughter and a 3-month-old infant when the blaze consumed most of the house. “We were all in another room talking and we smelled smoke,” Alexander said. “It all happened in the blink of an eye. It was small and…

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Fight for 15 rally takes place in Tampa

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

A crowd of low-wage workers crowded into Tampa’s Lykes Gaslight Park on Tuesday afternoon to join the nationwide “Fight for 15” protest, calling for a $15 minimum wage and a union. Workers in 270 cities across the country (and more than 20 in Florida) were expected to walk out in what organizers hoped would be be the fast food industry’s largest strike ever. The movement during the past year has expanded beyond fast-food workers to include home health care workers, child…

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Fight for $15 activists storm Pinellas Legislative Delegation meeting

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

A dozen community activists and low wage workers saturated the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation meeting Tuesday at USF St. Pete with pleas to increase the statewide minimum wage to $15 an hour. The speakers represented more than a third of those scheduled to address the delegation. Mimi Hopkins was first to speak. She’s 28 years old and has never taken a vacation. Instead, she uses what ever paid time off she gets from her minimum wage job to work overtime…

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Janelle Irwin’s Fight for $15 Challenge: Day 4

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

My Fight for $15 challenge is almost done. Day 4 of the challenge is winding down and my day-to-day spending has been at or below by $17 a day budget. That of course is not counting the unexpected flat tire that required a $30 fix, extra gas from having to drive to and from Tampa to rescue my stranded beloved and a $100 expense for a medical appointment not covered by insurance. To keep within budget tonight, my family will…

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Janelle Irwin’s Fight for 15 Challenge: Days 2 and 3

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

Day Three of my Fight for 15 challenge is winding down, and I’ve already failed oh-so-miserably. But that’s OK – my failures only further the intended argument sweeping the nation. People just can’t live a functional life on minimum wage. For two and a half days, I have been absolutely fantastic at squandering money and scrimping on meals. Tuesday, even while running around (like a chicken with its head cut off, mind you) managing the Election Day madness, I didn’t spend a single dime…

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