tv Democracy Now LINKTV May 11, 2022 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT
a refugee camp early this morning. this according to the palestinian health ministry and al jazeera. we will speak with one of her palestinian-american colleagues. then to the philippines, where ferdinand marcos, jr., the only son of the late filipino dictator ferdinand marcos, appears to have won a landslide victory in monday's presidential election. we will go to manila to speak with nobel peace prize winning journalist maria ressa about the role of disinformation in the presidential campaign. and we will talk to workers who were fired during the wave of union organizing at amazon and starbucks and are now fighting to get their jobs back. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report.
i'm amy goodman. israeli forces in the occupied west bank shot and killed shireen abu akleh, a veteran palestinian-american journalist working for al jazeera, as she covered an israeli army raid on the jenin refugee camp early this morning. a warning to our viewers and listeners, the video footage is graphic. the video released by al jazeera shows the moments after abu akleh was shot in the face by . >> what is going to happen under -- amy: a spokesperson for the israeli army told a military radio station she was likely killed by palestinian fire, though he offered no evidence. al jazeera's jerusalem bureau chief said she was targeted by
direct shot from an israeli sniper. a second palestinian journalist, ali al-samoudi, was hospitalized in stable condition after he was shot in the back. speaking from a hospital in jenin, al-samoudi said he was among four journalists pinned down by israeli snipers. >> the occupation is murderous and criminal. they shot as for no reason. we come a group of journalists, where they our full press conference in addition to the helmets with the words pressed written in large letters, as big the whole world. we were obvious. amy: and a statement, al jazeera said beautiful's the israeli government and its troops responsible for the killing, condemning it as a "heinous crime, which intends to only prevent the media from conducting their duty." the u.s. ambassador to israel called for an investigation, tweeting that he was "very sad to learn of the death of american and palestinian
journalist shireen abu akleh." we will go to a close friend of shireen after headlines. the house of representatives has overwhelmingly approved $40 billion in new military and economic assistance to ukraine. the measure passed on about 368 to 57 with the support of the entire democratic caucus. the a package now heads to the senate where it also has broad bipartisan support. president biden has pledged to sign the bill later this week. it is by far the largest foreign aid bill to move through congress in at least two decades. it's a swift advance through congress comes after the white house separated the ukraine aid package from a request for $10 billion in covid really funds. that request has now stalled amid opposition along with other parts of biden's legislative agenda, including the extension
of child tax credit that pulled millions out of poverty. in sri lanka, president gotabaya rajapaksa has ordered troops to shoot to kill anyone spotted damaging public property. the order failed to stop a second night of protests calling on rajapaksa to resign. protesters have burned down the homes of dozens of politicians, including a luxury holiday resort owneby the president's nephew. at lst eight people have been killed since government supporters attacked protesters on monday and more than 200 others have been injured. the world health organization is calling on china to abandon its zero covid strategy, citing the toll that weeks of lockdowns has taken on human rights and the economy. the who's director-general tedros adhanom ghebreyesus spoke tuesday from geneva. >> when we talk about zero covid
strategy, we don't think it is sustainable considering the behavior and what we anticipate in the future. amy: a foreign ministry spokesperson in beijing called the who chief's comments irresponsible, and his remarks were censored on chinese social media. on tuesday, the journal nature medicine published a new study finding china faces a tsunami of covid-19 cases if it abandons its zero-covid policy. researchers at a university in shanghai estimate that, left unchecked, the omicron variant could cause er 110 million cases of disease through july, with over 5 million hospital admissions and 1.6 million deaths. public health officials warn just six in 10 older adults in china have gotten a booster shot. also, the sinovac and sinopharm vaccines widely used in china are significantly less effective than the mrna shots produced by pfizer and moderna.
here in the united states, lawmakers in california and new york are seeking to expand abortion access in response to last week's leak of a supreme court draft opinion showing the court is poised to overturn roe v. wade. in california, lawmakers have proposed over a dozen bills as the state prepares to receive a growing number of people from out of state in need of abortions if roe is struck down. meanwhile, in new york, new legislation would help people pay for abortions, giving taxpayers an option to contribute to abortion funds. on capitol hill, treasu secretary janet yellen told the senate banking committee that the elimination of reproductive rights would have very damaging effects on the u.s. economy and would set women back decades. >> roe v. wade and access to reproductive health care, including abortion, will lead to increased labor force paicipation, it enabled many
women to finish school that increased their earning potential, it allowed women to plane and balance their families and careers. and research shows it has had a favorable impact on well-being and earnings of children. amy: here in new york, former honduran president juan orlando hernandez has pleaded not guilty to drug and and charges. protesters gathered outside the federal court where hernandez appeared tuesday after he was extradited to the united states last month. >> i took part of the protest. it makes me happy that all of our community that is here celebrating cost much destruction in honduras. the decisions were not correct. millions of hundred migrants are
here. during this time in office, there were thousands left as the result of his decisions and injustices. amy: president hernandez was arrested in february, less than a month after his presidential term ended in honduras. he was a longtime u.s. ally, who received backing during his entire eight-year term despite mounting reports of serious human rights violations and accusations of corruption and involvement with drug smuggling. billionaire elon musk said tuesday he's prepared to reverse twitter's ban on donald trump once his $44 billion purchase of twitter is complete. musk spoke during an interview at an event hosted by the financial times newspaper. >> it was not correct to ban donald trump. i think that was a mistake because it alienated a lot of the country did not ultimately result in not having a voice. i think it was a morally bad decision.
and foolish in the extreme. amy: twitter banned trump after the capitol insurrection on january 6, 2021, citing the risk he would further incite violence ahead of joe biden's inauguration. in a statement, citizens for responsibility and ethics in washington said -- "giving someone who tried to overturn an election and helped incite an insurrection a major forum to continue undermining democracy is dangerous." but aclu executive director anthony romero said trump should be allowed back on twitter. he wrote -- "like it or not, president trump is one of the most important political figures in this country, and the public has a strong interest in hearing his speech." in labor news, the national labor relations board has filed a lawsuit in federal court to immediately reinstate seven memphis starbucks workers who say they were illegally fired in retaliation of their union efforts. the group became known as the memphis 7. this comes as the nlrb issued a complaint against starbucks for
29 unfair labor practice charges, including over 200 violations of federal workers' protections, stemming from retaliation claims made by members of the starbucks workers united in buffalo, new york, where starbucks' union organizing effort began in august. we will have a story later in the broadcast with of starbucks and amazon workers. meanwhile, the house of representatives has voted to allow about 10,000 of its employees the right to form a union and bargain collectively without the threat of retaliation. democratic congressmember andy levin of michigan, who introduced the resolution in february, said in a statement -- "it's just outrageous that our own staffers had to wait 26 years after collective bargaining rights were afforded to everybody else on capitol hill. this is the temple of our democracy, and if workers don't have their rights here, it's kind of hollow to say that we're standing up for the rights of people everywhere." in more labor news, workers at a
target in christiansburg, virginia, have filed for a union election with the nlrb. workers at about a half dozen other target stores across the country are also looking to organize. we will have the latest on these organizing efforts. we will be speaking with both an amazon worker as well as a starbucks worker. delaware state university is denouncing the treatment of its women's lacrosse team after their bus was pulled over by sheriff's deputies in georgia and their belongings searched with a drug-sniffing dog. >> you there is anything in your luggage, we're probably going to find it. ok? i am not looking for a little bit of marijuana, -- amy: the university, which is a historically black institution, says the team was racially profiled. the stop took place in april as the team drove back to delaware after a game in florida. delaware state university president tony allen said the
incident left him feeling incensed. he said in a letter to the campus community -- "to be clear, nothing illegal was scovered in this search, and all of our coaches and student-athletes comported themselves with dignity throughout a trying and humiliating process." allen added -- "we do not intend to let this or any other incident like it pass idly by. we are prepared to go wherever the evidence leads us. we have video. we have allies. perhaps more significantly, we have the courage of our convictions." and sundiata acoli, the oldest former member of the black panthers still incarcerated, will be released from prison after nearly half a century. he is 85 years old. he suffers from dementia. the new jersey supreme court on tuesday ruled that acoli is not a risk to public safety. he was convicted of killing a new jersey state trooper on the new jersey turnpike in 1973. acoli has long said police ambushed his car, which was alsb carrying two fellow members of the black liberation army --
zayd malik shakur, who was shot to death, and assata shakur. she was imprisoned over the incident but later escaped to cuba, where she has political asylum. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman in new york, joined by democracy now! co-host juan gonzález in new brunswick, new jersey. hi, juan. juan: hi, amy. welcome to all of our listeners and viewers from around the country and around the world. amy: a warning to our audience, we begin today's show with a story that contains graphic footage. israeli forces in the occupied west bank have shot and killed shireen abu akleh, a veteran palestinian-american journalist working for al jazeera, as she covered an israeli army raid on the jenin refugee camp early this morning. this according to the palestinian health ministry and al jazeera. video released by al jazeera shows the moments after abu
akleh was shot in the face by . amy: a spokesperson said she was likely killed by palestinian snipers, though he offered no evidence. al jazeera jerusalem bureau chief said shireen abu akleh was targeted by direct shot from an israeli sniper. a second palestinian journalist, ali al-samoudi, was hospitalized in stable condition after he was shot in the back. speaking from a hospital in jenin, al-samoudi said he was among four journalists pinned down by israeli snipers. >> the occupation is murderous and criminal. they shot us for no reason. we, a group of journalists, were wearing our full present
uniforms in addition to the helmets with the words press in large letters as big as a whole world. we were obvious. amy: in a statement, al jazeera said it holds the israeli government and its military responsible for the killing, condemning it as a "heinous crime, which intends to only prevent the media from conducting their duty." the u.s. ambassador to israel, tom nides, called for an investigation, tweeting that he was "very sad to learn of the death of american and palestinian journalist shireen abu akleh." for more, we're joined by a dear friend and colleague of shireen abu akleh. dalia hatuqa is joining us from amman, jordan. welcome to democracy now! our deepest condolences on the death of shireen. can you tell us who she was and what you understand happened?
>> thank you, amy. shireen and i met in years ago in d.c. when we both worked for al jazeera. she was at the d.c. bureau for a bit. we instantly became friends. shireen was a palestinian christian from jerusalem. she was very bright. she was a kind reporter. she had an infectious laugh. she gave voice to the struggles of palestinians over a career spanning nearly three decades. during the height of the intifada, she became a mainstay and every palestinian home to the extent i would call israeli soldiers going around ramallah mimicking her, shouting from their own horns famous closing line. my understanding is she was on
assignment in israeli --jenin like you mention. i just watched an extended video wherein shireen was wearing a vest that was clearly marked press and she was wearing a helmet. i saw the shot came through the back of her neck and out of her face. she did not stand a chance. she did not have time to take cover. i believe only an experienced shooter could have made a shot like that. my understanding is the israelis said they're doing an investigation. i personally have no faith in any probe done by the israelis. many people have died and no one has been held accountable for their deaths. perhaps this will be a bit different because shireen is an american citizen, but that leads us to the question, why is being an american way more worthy of a
probe than any other palestinian? juan: most of the world has been transfixed on what has been happening in ukraine for the last several months. the russian invasion there. but could you talk about what has been happening in the occupied territories and the increased violence that has been occurring on the side of the israelis in those territories? >> i mean, i would not say there has been an increase in violence because violence is taking place every single day. there are home demolitions, demolitions of palestinian homes every day. palestinians are being expelled from their homes every day. settlements are being built. violence is kind of ongoing.
newly reason you hear about the extended violence is when israelis are being killed. neither palestinians nor israeli s should be killed. i think there needs to be an end to that and the only what is by ending israel's military rule of the occupied west bank. i want to circle back to shireen for a second. her killing is not an isolated incident. this has been happening for a long time. israeli attacks against media workers, especially palestinians, and the relative impunity under which they operate. i believe human rights watch, israeli's premier human rights organization, have all reached the same diagnosis, which is the reality that there is no accountability for these sorts of abuses when it comes to actions by the israeli authorities -- i mean, we recall
, for example, the killing of two journalists by israeli snipers covering the great march of return in 2018 and another two men who were maimed by israeli sniper fire in 2019 and 2015espectively. the last thing i will mention is the targeting and the bombing of buildings housing media in the gaza strip, including the israeli air raids that destroyed a building that housed al jazeera and the ap offices in may 2021. these are not isolated incidents. just the fact there may be a probe that is important but at the in of the day, i don't think me or any other palestinian really has any hope this probe will lead to justice for shireen
or any of the other journalists skill. amy: the spokesperson for palestinian authority said his government rejects any rover investigation into shireen's killing. he said, let me ask, what is the criminal have the right to take part in the investigation against his victim? international federation of journalists have submitted or are going to submit the case to the icc and the secretary international federation of journalists said shireen abu akleh is a systematic targeting of paternalist. final question to you, this is attributed to reuters that there is an investigation that is going to be conducted and al jazeera is saying that israeli police have rated shireen's home in jerusalem in occupied east jerusalem and have compensated palestinian flags and prevented
the planning of nationalistic songs. video see by al jazeera so friends and family shouting at israeli to leave the house most of paternalist said the mourners managed to push the forces outside the house but remain stationed in the area. i understand the funeral is tomorrow in jerusalem stop is that right? >> correct. i saw the video and saw the police raided the home and the area. she worked in roma lot her home was in east jerusalem. they confiscated flags like you mentioned. they prevented the pying of nationalistic songs. my understanding is tomorrow there will be a military -- what you call it? like a military funeral. a military funeral from the
presidential compound in ramallah and and she will be buried in east jerusalem where she was born. my understanding is today there will be some vigils and other gatherings by friends and loved ones in rommel r. amy: we thank you for being with us. tomorrow we will bring you more on the story. dalia hatuqa, palestinian-american, multimedia journalist, extensively cored palestine and israel, a friend of shireen abu akleh. next up, we go to another journalist come to the nobel peace prize winning filipina journalist maria ressa about the presidential elections in the philippines. stay with us. ♪♪ [music break]
democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. protests continue in the philippines after ferdinand marcos, jr., the only son of the late filipino dictator ferdinand marcos, appears to have won a landslide victory in monday's presidential election. the marcos dynasty returns to power some 36 years after the family fled a mass uprising in 1986 that ended marcos' brutal, two-decade dictatorship amid a slew of charges and convictions for corruption and human rights violations. the once-reviled former first family has since used social media to reinvent historical narratives of its time in power. marcos jr. is now the first candidate in recent history to win an outright majority in a philippines presidential election. his vice presidential running mate is sara duterte, the daughter of the current president rodrigo duterte. e0tmonday's election was plagued with violent attacks at polling sites and delays triggered by glitches in vote-counting machines.
for more, we go to manila to speak with maria ressa, the founder, ceo, and executive editor of rappler, the acclaimed filipino news website. she won the nobel peace prize in 2021 for her work defending free expression in the philippines and her reporting on the authoritarian rule of president rodrigo duterte. her forthcoming book "how to , stand up to a dictator: the fight for our future." welcome back to democracy now! our first chance to talk directly to you after you won the nobel prize, now you're covering the return of another dictator's family. this is ferdinand marcos junior. can you tell us about him and about the elections and your response? >> first of a, thank you for having me. good to talk to you. look, this is something we saw coming in the nobel lecture last december. i actually warned about the impact of social media and how
it is literally become behavior modification system. here the emblematic case, the impact on elections. we at rappler have gone back to look at the information operation that have targeted filipinos on the marcos side. it goes all the way back to 2014. in 2019, we published data that shows extensive manipulation, insidious and ablation are that point, facebook, the world's largest distribution platform. here we are 36 years later after people power revolt ousd ferdinand marcos, his only son ow poised to become the leader of the country that ousted him. reaction? i mean, i have been with you talking about the impact of disinformation, of information operations targeting journalists
. essentially, the same thing happened in ukraine, crimea, in the united states. in philippines, step one is [indiscernible] in this case, marcos the dictator. step two, replace most of the beneficiary is the namesake marcos jr., winning by an overwhelming at this point, must in percent of the votes -- almost 90% of the boats. he is up nearly 59%. that is how many votes he has gotten. juan: whats the responsibily of the role of the social media companies, especially into the developing world? in a country like a philippines, about 110 million people, 90 million people are on facebook? that is virtually every adult and most teenagers. are they operating -- are the
social media companies operating under different standards in the developing world than they are in the west? >> let's say there operating with worst standards because most of the restrictions, things that they have tried to deal with and content moderation come are in english. institutions are weaker. we are far more vulnerable. the other part, for six years in a row, filipinos have spent the most time onne and on social media globally. it has been talked about your petri dish where they experimented with manipulation and what appear [indiscernible] they porter it over to you.
the countr was the second most number of compromised accounts, the philippines. i guess the reason what it is important for you to look at what has happened to us in these elections are emblematic of the impact of concerted information rations of disinformation, where it literally changed history in front of our eyes. don't get me wrong, the marcos's have had a loyal following. but to actually make it to the presidential palace where you can technically now -- imagine they go after the marcos for the rest of the money they stole in 1986 stop it is a back to the future moment. we're struggling to get our heads around it. it will be interesting to hear more from the president-elect. juan: what does this mean and
the broader sense about the future of democracy and only under the philippines, but around the world if come in essence, paralleled reality, alternative set of realities are created by social media? the polls show the young people -- there were many young people who ended up backing fernand marcos jr.. talk about the future of democracy that we're confronting now. >> existential. this is what i pointed outn the nobel lecture last december. if you think about it, right now the world's largest delivery platform, facebook. social media platforms essentially by design divide and radicalize. and lies laced with anger and hate spread faster and further than facts. these platforms, because they want to keep the attention, and
keep you scrolling. but here's the thing. if you ve no facts, you can't have truth. we have no shared reality. without that, there is no rule of law and no democracy. this year there are more than 30 collections all around the world. -- elections all around the world. i certainly hope what has happened -- doesn't happen to you. amy: i remember when you were here in our studio and this is as you're covering duterte, we don't know this point about ferdinand marcos, jr. winning the election, and you said take this as a warning. this is very important. as you're both in american, filipina journalist. take this as a warning, and backup. why? >> every time the dominoes fall
has an impact on our democracy, right? i became a journalist because i believe information is power. but right now our information system is corrupted. in 2016, the election of rodrigo duterte was the first of the dominoes to fall. a little more than a month after that, you had brexit and then you had all of the elections of these populist style leaders. soon after that, you had the election of donald trump, election of jair bolsonaro in brazil. many more. now in 2022, these dominoes fall and we are the first come again. when this happens, the elections that follow are critical. jair bolsonaro, really far right fringe figured that was dragged rough -- united states the
term elections are in november. without anything, if we don't do anything else to the guard around the technology, we won't be able to protect democracy. juan: i want to ask about the role of the current president rodrigo duterte in terms of this election. his daughter ran as vice presidential candidate and it appears she got even more votes than the presidential candidate? his impact on this election? >> huge. the fact that children of these two men is essentially a marriage of the north, which is the strong of the marcoses in the south, stronghold of the dutertes. it is personality-centric. what we have seen happen in the philippines is president duterte
was elected democratically. he promised violence. he delivered violence. he is dabbing investigated but international criminal court for crimes against humanity. he comes up and he is the first leader to use social media, again. he played a role in this dreamily popular, with the help of social media -- extremely popular, with the help of social media. the narrative that have proliferated from a combination of duterte, marcos networks that have operated and taken over the mainstream of our facebook ecosystem. he retains his popularity. would marcos have won with the same margins?
no. not if you ran alone. but the kind of putting them together has given him almost 60%. that is unprecedented. amy: i want to ask you about your fellow 2021 nobel peace prize laureate, the russian newspaper editor dmitry muratov who was attacked on as he rode a april 7 train from moscow by an assailant who poured red paint over him, causing his eyes to "burn terribly." muratov closed the independent newspaper novaya gazeta after warnings from russian state censors over its critical coverage of the invasion of ukraine. the paper now has a european edition staffed by journalists who have left russia. a u.s. intelligence assessment confirmed the red paint thrown on muratov contained acetone, the same substance as nail-polish remover, and said the attackers were working for unnamed russian spy services. muratov has vowed to auction off his nobel peace prize medal to support ukrainian refugees.
when did you last speak to him, see him and your thoughts on this whole situation, of your fellow nobel laureate? >> last week, amy, we were together. actually was given permission to travel. this is one of the things we talked about. just four months after we saw each other in oslo, how much our situations have changed. he had a hard time getting out of moscow partly because of no planes are flying out right now. thinly we were there, we kind of talked about you believe how much the world has changed under the last four months? if you look even at the reporters without borders, there is a new press freedom index, our country has dipped full of so in a strange way, the questions of the nobel committee in giving this award, right at
the time when everything changed for the worst again -- amy: finally, you have been jailed, sued by the duterte government numerous times. how do you protect rappler and yourself under this next ruler? under marcos? and did you ever think you would be saying president marcus again? >> i am grappling. to be determined. we are sitting down right now to try to figure out what does this mean? this has been a campaignç?z that has been largely for raft of issues on marcos jr.'s side. the interesting thing is, kind of like a car crash. like when you're about to crash, when you're skidding on ice, know how your told to pump the gas and steer into the skid.
well, that is what marcus did. strangely, it is brilliant in its own way. owned the history of his father. when his campaign began, music of his father, music that provides fight so many victims of martial law. at the same time, he dressed like his father. it is a wait and see over the next few days and weeks as members of his cabinet are announced. it has been tough covering him for rappler because like bolsonaro again, marcos traveled with his bloggers. so he has people carrying cameras who are not journalists but propagandists. journalists are kept very far away. he refused to attend any of the debates. is also is the first president that won an election without
having to answer any questions from journalists. amy: a quick last question, you won the nobel for your noble efforts understate persecution. i am wondering your thoughts on julian assange, who it looks like his soon to be extradited to the united states to face charges that could put him in jail for the rest of his life, 175 years in prison as he published mounds of information about the iraq war, afghanistan, and the state department documents. your thoughts? >> i think, amy, part of the problem is the flattening of words and the rubbing of meaning. r --obbing of meaning. i've said lian assange is not journalists and i've been clobbered on social media for saying that. i think he is a whistleblower who deserves the protection as a whistleblower, but oftentimes
whenever i am asked about this, it is conflated. right? but i think we need to keep a separate for both his protection and ours. conflating them rob's meaning. having said that, i can't say i am across everything but certainly he has dumped documents there, right? it is hard for me to claim julian assange is a journalist. that is probably because i am such a stickler -- you know i worked -- amy: would you call him then a political prisoner? >> i think we will have to see. amy: maria ressa, thank you for being with us, founder, ceo, and executive editor of rappler, an acclaimed philippine news website. winner of the nobel peace prize. her forthcoming book "how to , stand up to a dictator: the fight for our future." next up, we talked to starbucks
amy: that is tristan "lion" dutchin who we will be speaking with in a few minutes. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. as we look now at how workers who were fired during the wave of union organizing at starbucks and amazon are fighting to get their jobs back. we will begin with starbucks. the national labor relations board has filed a suit in federal court to immediately reinstatement the illegally fired starbucks workers and union leaders who became known as the memphis 7.
this comes as the nlrb issued a complaint against starbucks for 29 unfair labor practice charges including over 200 violations of federal workers' protections, stemming from retaliation claims made by members of the starbucks workers united in buffalo, new york, where starbucks' union organizing effort began in gust. for more, we go to memphis, tennessee come to speak with one of the memphis 7, beto sanchez unit organizer, one of the workers fired just weeks after they announced their plans to form a union. welcome to democracy now! the nlrb decision just came down yesterday to file this rare lawsuit. explain its significance and explain what happened when you got fired. what were the reasons given?
>> absolutely. it is unfortunately something that is not friendly with other corporations. they're not going to fire and play directly for unionizing because they are aware -- instead they will try to force something that was ner enforced for whatever reason. the reason they wanted fire me was because i had a mask off while off-duty, which doesn't make any sens and theame goes for the rest of the seven as well as other workers across the u.s. tt have also been retaliated against. it is something that is not new between starbucks and other corporations. at this point, we have been happy to see the nlrb's filing not only this in a lawsuit but an injunction. the significance of that is starbucks loves to stall on these very import hearings. which th our affidavits and what has been happening and what has been recorded on soci media that starbucks has been
doing that is antiunion and unionbusting, the nlrb has been able step in and tell starbucks we're not able o stall this or do anything because there has been many times starbucks has been trying stall time to build momentum or kill any direction we have had. so far, the nlrb has been on our site and helping us out. i am happy to say that we are as up-to-date 65 stores unionized across the u.s., as well as over 250 stores that are in the process of unionizing. juan: the nlrb's ruling on friday located the ceo of starbucks alleging he violated the law last november i promising an increase in benefits to those employees if they did not unionized. your response to howard schultz -- he has an image, likes to cultivate an image as a progressive liberal american
corporate executive. how he has been responding and how to top management of starbucks has been responding to these unionization efforts? >> if there's anything i have learned throughout this entire ordeal is starbks is willing to fight tooth and nail to protect the image they have built over the years. i love to put up this façade of being a progressive company, of being woke, the first and leading areas. like i have seen, they are willing to retaliate and fire workers for airing dirty laundry. they're just as bad as any other fortune 100 company out there. this is something i have learned with something like the pandemic that usually things like that even a good push, that kind of show the true colors of people like howard schultz. it is moments likthat where you're given an opportunity whether should i worry about my profits or ray about my workers. at the end of the day, most of
these ceos are going to worry about their profits more than their workers. they love to call just essential workers without giving us the essential pay, the essential dignity, respect, the essential things we needed to work and generate billions of dollars that howard schultz was able to have and live so cfortably in manhatn. it been planed to show howard schultz, like the rest of the upper management, they will retaliate very hard against people like me that are vocal about this, that are willing to fight against the company. starbucks is one of those companies that loves to market off of every possible because they can find. i am sure you are aware about how when pride comes, every single comedy puts on their two little rainbow logo. additionally as july roles, it's gone. like th's btter, indigenous
lives, transtes, lgbtq. at the same time, they will market black lives matter materials for the workers but at the same time they will be firing black workers in memphis for unionizing. at this point, he to show what people like howard schultz care more about an it is obviously their image. amy: beto sanchez, thank you for being with us. we will certainly follow what happens now that the rear lawsuit was filed by the nlrb last night. demeaning you all be reinstated. beto sanchez is with the starbucks workers united, one of the work is known as the memphis 7, fired by starbucks. as we continue to speak with workers fired during the weight of union organizing, we turn now to two amazon workers who are part of the first successful organizing effort in amazon's history at amazon's staten island jfk8 warehouse, which voted to unionize last month.
they were both fired this month. amazon told "the washington post" the firing of the two workers are "unrelated to each other and unrelated to whether these individuals support any particular cause or group." but we wanted to find out more. mat cusick was told by amazon's human resources on may 4 th he was terminated for "voluntary resignation due to job abandonment." but he says he was fired for taking covid-related leave. meanwhile, tristan "lion" dutchin, whose image and comments were featured in several media outlets during the organizing drive, was told friday, on may 7, that he was being terminated for falling behind on productivity goals. this comes as the national labor relations board on monday upheld a complaint that amazon violated labor law in the staten island union vote by holding mandatory worker meetings to dissuade employees from voting to unionize. for more, we are joined by tristan "lion" dutchin and mat
cusick, both of them organizers with the amazon labor union. we welcome you both to democracy now! mat, you are the spokesperson for the union, the amazon labor union. how did you get fired? >> i would n say on the spokesperson exactly. i am an organizer just communications but i was on a covid care leave that i was told was -- april 29. instead, extended the 26th. after three days, begin termination proceengs against me for abannment of my job. ey d not tell me anything about that until what was pposed to be the last day of my covid leap. amy: you have covid? >> no, i was caring for someone with covid. juan: this issue, coincidence of you being fired for not many
productivity -- most people are not aware of these productivity goals that amazon has for its workers. can you talk about that and why you don't believe that that was the real reason? >> tristan was fired for oductity. he can speak to that. the contet around that is that the productivity requirements have been made illegal to a great extent in california and new york has just issued legiation,ew york state, warehouse worker protection act, make it illegal in new york as well because we know these productivity quotas are great reason one amazon has two to three times higher injury rates than other warehouses,
reasowas for your firing? >> the reason for my firing was as mentioned, productivity, not meeting the certain goal. i was rently terminated may 7 due to falling behind rate. i fell behind rate in the past before. me just being a regular worker working at a regular pace, these people expect you to work really fast. they expect you to pick items like 275 an hr stop 375 an hour at another station. they sent a couple people to retrain me. i last retrain was three weeks ago. after that is when i started to meet the goals and all of a
sudden came out of nowhere and said i had to report to hr and fired me. they kept -- only the write ups are supposed to expire within 50 or 60 days but they cap record. juan: you mentioned these rates. for people that never been in an amazon rate, say 275 an hour. that is about five items per minute that a worker is required to pick and put on a conveyor belt? >> yes. it just depends. the universal stations, like a regular station where you pick -- [indiscernible] are different from the universal. amy: can you talk about being a very visible organizer around
the amazon labor union's organizing efforts? you won major victory at the staten island warehouse but across the street, it was voted down. can you talk about the difference you think but also whether that was a factor in you being fired, your face adorned a number of the organizing effort flyers? >> yes. this also has to do with retaliation, meeting affiliated with the amazon labor union. i don't let hr know, but they could tell because they see my face all over the news, me doing speeches, interviews. i feel like this was basically, like, this was a target. after we won the victory of
jfk8 in april, amazon is just regaing theirower to do with a one, sending more union busters. everything is overturning. i think it does play a big part of me -- not just me, a few other organizers. juan: mat, could you talk about the imprints of the neighborly relations board standing up behind the -- the national labor relations board standing up behind and president biden recently had a meeting with labor leaders around the country, including at amazon worke, the portance of the white house stepping up in defense of union organizing? >> yeah, so the national labor relations board has been much more receptive to charges being filed aroun unfair labor practices. they are much more willing projections to protect workers before the hearings are resolved. this is one of the things that we are both going to be firing
charges with thelrb regarding our retaliation cases and also we will be king for an injunction so we will be reinstated while those cases go through e process. this is something the previous nlrb was not doing. we are grateful there is a little bit of an opening for protecting worke. that being said, do need to pass a lot of different legislation, we need to fund the nlrb more. the nlrb needs to get more assertive in the ways that it is helping workers because the loss as they arare very broken. jill biden did invite our president chris smalls to the whte house. chris smalls laidut t things that need to be done. amy: 10 seconds. >> he needsto do somethg. we cannot get the product on, that he needs to signn