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Clear it with SidneyHow our blog got its name >

 
Notes on journalism for the common good
by Lindsay Beyerstein

How our blog got its name

Sidney Hillman was a powerful national figure during the Great Depression, a key supporter of the New Deal, and a close ally of President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

When the rumor spread that President Roosevelt ordered his party leaders to “clear it with Sidney” before announcing Harry S. Truman as his 1944 running mate, conservative critics turned on the phrase, trumpeting it as proof that the president was under the thumb of “Big Labor.”

Over the years, the phrase lost its sting and became a testament to Hillman's influence.

It's hard to imagine a labor leader wielding that kind clout today, but we like the idea—and we hope Sidney would give thumbs up to our blog.

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Clear It With Sidney

Fri, May 15, 2015

The Best of the Week's News

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The Best of the Week's News

  • When pioneering feminist psychologist Sandy Bem developed Alzheimer's Disease, she decided to end her life on her own terms.
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Fri, May 8, 2015

The Best of the Week's News

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The Best of the Week's News

  • Watch Bryan Stevenson of the Equal Justice Initiative deliver his unforgettable acceptance speech for the inaugural George "Citizen" Barrett Award for Public Interest Law.
  • Watch Jelani Cobb of the New Yorker accept his Hillman Prize for Opinion & Analysis Journalism.
  • All the speeches from Tuesday's Hillman Prize ceremony will be available soon on this site. You can also subscribe to Hillman's YouTube Channel to keep up with all our video programming. 
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Wed, May 6, 2015

The 65th-Annual Hillman Prizes were a night to remember. In this image Bryan Stevenson, Founder of the Equal Justice Institute, gives an unforgettable acceptance speech for the inaugural George Barrett Award for Public Interest Law.  

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The 65th-Annual Hillman Prizes were a night to remember. In this image Bryan Stevenson, Founder of the Equal Justice Institute, gives an unforgettable acceptance speech for the inaugural George Barrett Award for Public Interest Law.  

Check out the beautiful photographs of our winners, judges, officials, and guests, celebrating excellence in socially conscious journalism at the Times Center on Tuesday night. We are still adding images to the archive. Check back later to see even more. 

Many thanks to our photographers, Clark Jones and Dave Sanders.

Help us make our album as complete as possible, please tag yourself and your friends in these images. 

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Mon, May 4, 2015

On Tuesday night, the Sidney Hillman Foundation will present the first annual George "Citizen" Barrett Award for Public Service Law to Bryan Stevenson for his tireless efforts to secure justice for the most vulnerable members of our society. 

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On Tuesday night, the Sidney Hillman Foundation will present the first annual George "Citizen" Barrett Award for Public Service Law to Bryan Stevenson for his tireless efforts to secure justice for the most vulnerable members of our society. 

The award is named after George Barrett, a crusading Nashville civil rights attorney, who died last year at the age of 86. As we prepare to honor his legacy, let's look back an an obituary written by Hedy Weinberg, the executive director of the ACLU of Tennessee. She describes Barrett's contributions to civil rights law, his dogged committment to the First Amendment, and his infectious joy in public service. 

 

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Fri, May 1, 2015

The Best of the Week's News

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The Best of the Week's News

  • Six Baltimore cops charged in death of Freddie Gray.
  • Hillman Judge Ta-Nehisi Coates: The violence in Baltimore didn't start with the riots.
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Wed, Apr 29, 2015

The Children's Place, a retailer whose goods were being made in the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh at the time of its 2013 collapse, has agreed to pay $2 million to a fund to help survivors of the catastrophe. The deal was brokered by Workers United SEIU.

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The Children's Place, a retailer whose goods were being made in the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh at the time of its 2013 collapse, has agreed to pay $2 million to a fund to help survivors of the catastrophe. The deal was brokered by Workers United SEIU.

The labor organization Workers United SEIU reached an agreement with The Children's Place last Thursday, the day before the second anniversary of the disaster that killed more than 1,100 garment workers in the Rana Plaza factory building in Dhaka, Bangladesh. As a result of that agreement, protests planned at Children's Place stores for last Friday were canceled. The activist groups plan to continue to press other U.S. retailers, including J.C. Penney and Wal-Mart, for contributions.

Activists hope to raise a total of $30 million for the survivors fund. 

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Fri, Apr 24, 2015

The Best of the Week's News

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The Best of the Week's News

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Thu, Apr 23, 2015

Charles Gladden works in the cafeteria at the Dirksen Senate Office Building, but he has not had a fixed address for 5 years. Instead of going home at night, the 63-year-old diabetic grandfather sleeps in the McPherson Square Metro Station, near the White House.

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Charles Gladden works in the cafeteria at the Dirksen Senate Office Building, but he has not had a fixed address for 5 years. Instead of going home at night, the 63-year-old diabetic grandfather sleeps in the McPherson Square Metro Station, near the White House.

Gladden recently took part in a one-day strike to draw attention to the fact that the U.S. government is the single biggest indirect creator of jobs that do not pay a living wage. 

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Mon, Apr 20, 2015

In September 2014, Doug Pardue, Glenn Smith, Jennifer Berry Hawes, and Natalie Caula Haff won the Sidney Award for "Til Death do Us Part," a fearless, masterfully reported investigation into the domestic homicide crisis in South Carolina.

Read our Backstory Interview about the making of this landmark series 

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In September 2014, Doug Pardue, Glenn Smith, Jennifer Berry Hawes, and Natalie Caula Haff won the Sidney Award for "Til Death do Us Part," a fearless, masterfully reported investigation into the domestic homicide crisis in South Carolina.

Read our Backstory Interview about the making of this landmark series 

Today, "Til Death" went on to win the gold medal for Public Service, the most prestigious of all the Pulitzer Prizes in journalism

Our warmest congratulations to Doug, Glenn, Jennifer, and Natalie. We knew they were destined for big things! 

 

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Fri, Apr 17, 2015

The Best of the Week's News

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The Best of the Week's News

  • The New York City Housing Authority is way behind on lead abatement and kids are paying the price. (Hat Tip: Liz)
  • 65% of migrants who died in 2014 drowned in the Mediterranean. How one NGO is trying to save lives at sea.
  • NYU made 10,000 construction workers on its Abu Dhabi campus second-class citizens, denying them wage and hour protections that the rest of NYU's employees enjoy.
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