♪♪ ♪♪ -A day's work for me... -A day's work for me... -A day's work... -Can be completely, completely unpredictable.
♪♪ -A day's work for me is... -Doing the things that I love.
-This work is incredibly meaningful.
♪♪ -My school board decided to cut 236 teachers.
I miss all of you.
I woke up early today.
I have two interviews.
We'll see what happens.
-We decided to go on strike.
-We're asking for a change.
-We're just asking for our wages to be raised up so we can survive.
We need the support so that we can make it to the end of this fight.
-It's been about a week and a half since I've seen my son.
"Oh, my gosh, I'm only gonna be home three days."
I just have to decide what's more important.
♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ -To me, work means... -To me, work means... -Work means different things for everybody.
♪♪ -Work is about money and sacrifice.
-Not necessarily what you want to do but what you have to do.
♪♪ -Work can also provide you a purpose in life and make you feel good about yourself.
-Pride at doing one's best.
-Being able to sleep at night knowing that there's some kind of fulfillment.
♪♪ -In America, work isn't just what you do.
It's who you are.
Are you still working on that video game?
-Just looking at parts for it.
-How has it been being on the truck without me?
-I miss you.
-I miss you, too.
-I work long hours.
I drive lots of miles.
That part does not bother me.
It's the being away from my son and my husband that bothers me more.
♪♪ ♪♪ Terry's driving.
As truck drivers, our days aren't like most.
We put in 12-hour days seven days a week.
We are outside of Moriarty, New Mexico.
I'm gone from home anywhere from three weeks to seven or eight weeks is probably the most I've ever been away from home.
We live in the truck 24/7.
We're a team operation.
I normally work midnight to noon, and Terry normally works noon to midnight.
We pick up a load and drive hundreds of miles a day.
We are in Tennessee.
We're in Pennsylvania.
-That's the Mississippi River.
-We've hauled shoes, clothes, furniture, dried food, dog food.
Without trucks, America would be a different America.
We have the convenience of going to a store, and everything we need's there.
How did it get there?
-Miss Laura is driving.
[ Laughs ] ♪♪ -Growing up for me was a little up and down.
My hometown is Stilwell, Oklahoma.
It's a poverty-stricken area.
I was about 6 when my dad unexpectedly died.
My mom did work even after my dad passed away.
One thing I didn't really have growing up was anyone to say, "You know, you just put your mind to it, and you can become whatever you want to."
I did the teaching thing and did some minimum-wage-type stuff.
My brother was like, "Well, why don't you come over to work here, become a truck driver?"
If you cook it, he will come.
I'll be there.
-I looked at what he had done.
He didn't have a high-school degree, and he was able to save money.
He was able to buy property, build a house.
I loved it.
I loved getting behind the wheel and just looking out at the different scenery.
The only thing I don't like, of course, is being away from my son.
Spencer is 12 now.
He'll be turning 13 in February.
You wanna do this for me?
-No, I'm good.
No, I'm good.
Trust me, I'm good.
-Work and life, it's not really balanced.
I work way more than I spend time with family.
But we have bills, and we have goals, and the more miles you get, the more money you make.
We get a bonus if we drive so many miles a month.
It's a good extra over $1,000.
Since teaming with Terry, we hit bonus almost every month.
-So, our goal is to get over?
-19,600 miles a month.
-For each month.
I just wanna spend as much time as I can with Spencer before he starts school.
♪♪ That is going to hurt our chances of getting bonus for the month.
I just have to decide, you know, what's more important.
-This is what my day looks like.
♪♪ [ Dog barks ] -Off we go.
-This is what I do.
-This is 42nd Street.
[ Radio chatter, siren wails ] ♪♪ [ Backup signal beeping ] ♪♪ [ Register beeping ] ♪♪ ♪♪ -This is my favorite part.
♪♪ -Finally done for the day.
-As to employees who received a notice of layoff, I do issue notification to employees whose services are terminated.
-...As a result, the district will receive less revenue.
Because of that reduced revenue, there is a need to reduce personnel.
This is not the ideal time to be sharing this information, that's for sure.
-On Friday, March 13th, my school board decided to cut 236 teachers from the roster, you can say, because of a negative amount of funds in the books.
So, I am unsure where that leaves me.
♪♪ I just have been tired, and it's finally catching up to me.
[ Cellphone ringing ] -So, what's the deal here?
We didn't get a chance to say goodbye, huh, to students or coworkers, things like that.
I'm still grieving this loss.
Like, just today being, like, what, day two of technically no work.
-How's your job search coming?
Have you been applying places or...?
We'll see if there's gonna be an interview scheduled.
Have you interviewed or anything?
-I've had one interview, a charter school.
-It's mostly charter schools hiring.
-I would be making about $15,000 to $20,000 less a year.
-So, are you gonna stay in the education field?
-I don't know.
I don't know.
-It's not just about us losing our jobs.
That is affecting everything in our lives -- relationships, where we end up staying, whatever it is.
-[ Speaks indistinctly ] -What?
♪♪ [ Laughs ] I'm out.
[ Laughs ] This is my city.
It is predominantly Hispanic, and a lot of people have family over in Tijuana.
We do live in a borderland here in San Diego, here specifically in Chula Vista.
This is a borderland.
This is a mixture.
And that's my elementary school right there.
I've wanted to be a teacher since I was in kindergarten.
I would come home, and I remember making my parents and my brother sit down so that they can play the part of student.
My mom graduated from high school and attended community college for one semester before dropping out and working to help her family.
And my dad did not graduate from high school.
They were very big on pushing us to get educated because they didn't have the opportunity.
There was a substitute teacher my senior year.
You could tell she wasn't used to a community like ours.
She asked us where we wanted to go to college.
And a lot of my classmates, very smart kids, they were saying Duke and Princeton.
And she looked us dead in the eye, and she said, "Well, looking at where you're coming from, it's more than likely not gonna happen."
Me growing up, I didn't have that many Mexican or Mexican-American teachers standing in front of me.
And when I did, I was like, "Oh, yes.
Someone who understands even a little bit more about me because they've experienced it."
And I wanna do -- I wanna be that.
And I am now on the back side of Castle Park High School.
-Class of 2020.
-For me, work is a chance to give back and make a difference in future generations.
So, work is not just work.
Being a teacher is fulfilling one of my life goals.
[ Horns honking, cheering ] I have been contacted by different industries, a lot of sales.
I'm keeping it as an option, but I've told them, so far, that I would like to stay in the education field.
My calling is teaching.
And to be without a teaching job is... ♪♪ For a lack of better words, it sucks.
I'm doing my best to find something fulfilling for me.
But I get my last paycheck tomorrow, and if I don't have a job, then what's gonna happen?
♪♪ -Love you.
To me, work is pride.
That's what that means to me, something that you can be so proud to do.
You do your work, you see your results every day, and you can go home.
You're tired from it, but you're also very proud of what you've done.
-What does work mean to me?
Work is everything.
-It's challenging every day, physically and mentally.
-This is what work means to me -- blood, sweat, and tears.
-And I absolutely love it.
-I eat, sleep, and breathe it.
-Work means confidence.
With the challenges that I face every day, I use the skills that I've learned to build that confidence.
-A day's work is driving a semi.
-I think the best part of my job is looking through my office window and seeing America.
-I am a janitor.
-To clean office buildings and make sure everything was safe.
-Which can be very, very physically taxing.
-Whether it's a house or a commercial, these people are depending on us.
-You would be surprised at the level of comfort you could bring to the patron.
-Cleaning is the work of a caregiver.
-It helps people stay healthy and happy.
-And that's a very rewarding feeling.
-That's what work means to me.
I'm a sanitation worker, AKA hopper.
♪♪ -A hopper is a garbage man that runs on the side of the truck, hopping off and on of the truck, retrieving the trash cans.
It's a workout, really.
But it's a different kind of workout.
This ain't like no workout you ever met.
You're gonna get -- You're gonna -- It's gonna cramp you up.
Your whole body gonna be hurting.
You're about to feel something you've never felt before if you come out here.
-We decided to go on strike because there was no effort and no kind of respect towards the guys.
[ Cheers and applause ] -We get the garbage up three to four hours.
Three to four hours, $10.25 an hour.
♪♪ That's not no money in four hours?
Do the math.
I gotta feed my family.
[ Cheers and applause ] -You know, they have had so many injuries that they've covered up with money and nobody talks about it.
A guy got electrocuted one time, had to go to the hospital.
You know, these people are ignoring that stuff.
-As of now with the strike, we're three months in.
Just trying to get the support and the help we need from the community around the metropolitan area.
[ Cheers and applause ] -My name is D'Artanian.
Been a sanitation worker for four years.
I am a native of New Orleans.
This is the missus.
This is the queen bee right here.
Being on strike, this affects your life -- your personal life, your relationships.
I've been having trouble with lots of things because of being on strike.
♪♪ Like, so far, we've heard, you know, nothing as far as our demands.
I don't know what's gonna happen, what's going on.
I don't know.
♪♪ I'm still on strike.
And that's, like, a life you never asked for right there.
Like, it's hard.
It is really hard being on strike.
The worst part about it, one of the worst things about it, is not knowing the ending.
You don't know.
My name is Laura, and I am a random retail worker.
I sell makeup for a major department store.
It's fun because I get to talk with people, and I wanna feel like I'm helping people and just adding to their day.
-I work in retail.
-I work retail.
-I work at a grocery store.
-General customer service, selling items, stuff like that.
-I think a lot of times when I tell people that I work in retail, they think I just fold sweaters all day.
But in reality, it's so much more than that.
-The watermelon I will give you a bag for, okay?
I consider my job to be a facilitator for the community.
-I really love talking to my customers and interacting with them and finding out about their lives.
-The customers who come in here, I've gained so many new friendships.
-I had to learn new ways of interacting with customers speaking through a mask.
-Wearing a mask, enforcing everybody to wear a mask every day, fighting with people to put on a mask.
-That's what my work means to me.
-A day's work is... -Working in a restaurant.
-In a restaurant.
-How may I help you?
-When it gets really busy and tickets are flying everywhere, my managers trust me to stay level-headed and to maintain order on the line.
-Fast-food comes with its ups and downs.
But I have learned to step up to the daily challenges with nothing but a smile.
-You don't know what you're gonna get every time you walk in that door.
-Someone might wanna try to fight you, someone might hit on you.
You really have no idea.
But I'm never bored, and I think that's my favorite part.
-It's better than sitting at a desk all day long.
-I love bringing people together through food.
-The sense of community.
-Helping feed each other, nurture each other.
-And to know that, in some small way, we brought them a little slice of happiness.
♪♪ -It's 4:00 in the morning.
I'm getting ready to start my workday.
I'm gonna try to sneak in and get a kiss, but he'll probably push me away.
We'll see what happens.
-[ Laughs ] I hate you.
-I'm getting ready to start my day.
I need a kiss for a good day.
At least a hug?
-Let me kiss you on the cheek.
-Oh, come on.
Yeah, he's been with me for a couple of weeks.
During the summer, I get to bring Spencer on the truck with me.
I will pick him up, drop him off, pick him up.
And I'm trying not to keep him on the truck so long that he just absolutely hates me by the time he gets off the truck, so...
I'm gonna leave him at home this next time, but I'll try to get back through one more time.
He doesn't wanna go.
He's tired of being on the truck.
♪♪ We're getting ready to get in the car and go.
-Yes, we will be happy.
-Let's go home.
Get your seatbelt on.
I've been out over seven weeks.
Normally whenever I stay out seven weeks, I would be home for seven days.
But I'm only gonna be home like three days this time.
It's kinda hard to hug you with the selfie stick.
-It's all right.
-Okay, it's day one of being home.
Everything is just kind of piled beside me here on the couch.
Behind me, you see a pile of clothes.
I did not put those there.
I'm home so few days at a time that I have to pick and choose what I do with my time.
And I would rather spend it with them as opposed to putting clothes away.
I'm ready to get this party started.
I'm going on out.
♪♪ There's Spencer.
So we were gonna go to the lake.
My husband was supposed to have the boat ready, but we're having issues with it.
So it'll probably next year now before we go.
It's just hard for one person to do it all if I'm not here to help.
Um... ♪♪ All right.
So this is a little hard on me.
Okay, the grass is a little tall when I get home.
Okay, it's not that bad.
I've seen it worse.
But when I come home and I go in the house... ...and it's that messy, it's like, "Oh, my gosh, I'm only gonna be home three days."
So it's been four years since we've had the boat out on the lake, and...that was the one thing.
I'm like, "You know, we can at least go to the lake," because we haven't been in so long.
And it's not ready.
Biting my tongue... because I don't wanna be that wife.
I'm gonna go in the house and, I guess, try to clean.
It's just there's -- we have too much stuff for such a small space.
We need to build a house.
Day three of home time.
I just got finished using it.
It's time for me to go back to work.
So I'm gonna have to say goodbye to the boys.
They're on their way to town to get some groceries.
I'm gonna miss you, boys.
You didn't give me hug?
Like, you're not gonna give me a hug?
He doesn't wanna be in the truck.
He says he doesn't want to be on the truck.
See you when I see you.
♪♪ -I'm here to pick up Terry.
So good to see her!
-So, we're iffy.
-We're kind of iffy if we're gonna get our bonus.
♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ -Some of my seniors would leave hidden messages for me.
♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ That was not as easy as I thought it was gonna be.
Not that I thought it was gonna be that easy, but it's sad that my time, my three years of teaching at Castle Park High School, can fit into a few boxes.
♪♪ Good morning.
Well, there's my -- Hi.
It's time to eat.
So I woke up early today.
I have two interviews, so, of course, I wanted to get ready and make breakfast, clean up, take care of the dogs.
♪♪ I wrote down any interview questions that have come up in teacher interviews for me.
"What is your philosophy of education?"
And my philosophy of education is that anyone can learn.
It just takes the right approach.
I just got a message from Josh saying that I'm gonna rock it.
[ Chuckles ] I hope so.
♪♪ And then I have been teaching IB Theory of Knowledge.
For the juniors.
-IB Theory of Knowledge -- Is that taken generally by a freshman or sophomores when they first begin the program?
-They have some classes at some schools where it's a preparation course.
It depends on the school site.
-I just wanted to go for a night walk, get out.
Whenever I'm feeling anxious, I get out and go do something.
♪♪ I got an e-mail from the middle school that I had been interviewing with, and I did not get the position.
But it just makes me wonder, when will I find out if I have any position?
♪♪ -Hi there.
And a day for work for me is not so bad because I do customer service and sales, and I get to deal with people all day, and I love to deal with people.
This is Quadiri.
How may I assist you today?
-Please give me a call back at your earliest convenience.
-Welcome to my cubicle.
Generally, I'm sitting here at the computer doing miscellaneous tasks.
-Doing all the bookkeeping.
-Process payroll and payroll taxes.
-Making sure their numbers are all in line.
-Answering our customers' calls and routing them to the appropriate party.
-And I love my job.
-To me, work means more than crunching numbers.
-Although administrative work may sound boring on paper, I choose to look at it as making other people's lives easier.
-Or by being a teammate that my coworkers can rely on.
-To me, work means collaboration.
-We used to do a lot more socially here at the office.
We used to go out to restaurants to celebrate people's lunches.
You know, we always have to wear masks now in the common hallway areas.
-We no longer get to physically see each other in the office.
-This has created much slower, quieter days, which has brought our morale and spirits down in the office.
-I will say I'm excited to get back to the office.
-I sure do miss seeing my coworkers.
After all, they are my home away from home.
-There's really nothing happening.
So, you know, now, they're not answering or responding, really, in any way.
If it was ever an interest to them, they would take care of the small problem.
It's just a small problem.
We're waiting on them to meet our demands.
Man, it's like watching paint dry, you know?
We've always did different fundraisers to keep our strike going.
Just getting my day ready right now, kinda getting this stuff set up -- ice chest, the propane, getting the truck ready.
Bring out all the grills.
Should be cooking food today, Southern food.
Trying to raise money, continue to raise money for our cause.
♪♪ ♪♪ -Hey, guys.
We're filling packages out, sending them out to the customers that supported our City Waste Union.
-Continuing the strike, we immediately knew it wasn't gonna be a one-day event, not even a one-week event.
We had already made the plan to go as long as possible, to go as far as possible.
So we were gonna need some kind of money.
We are City Waste Union.
We'll be at Duncan Plaza today for the eviction event, passing out PPE and hand sanitizer.
We'll also have shirts for $25 and yard signs that come with a bumper sticker for $15.
These things support our cause.
Got to thank y'all.
These are the funds that are helping us out while we are on strike, taking care of our bills and different essential needs that we have.
We do need the continued support of our supporters... so that we can make it to the end of this fight.
♪♪ -To me, work means teaching students to become successful independent thinkers.
-Motivating, inspiring, and encouraging my students to strive for their dreams.
-These are my students.
They are my calling.
-Have a seat.
-The work of teaching goes way beyond delivering instruction and handing out assignments.
-Because teaching is a work of the heart.
-I'm the fan in that student's cheering section.
-To let them know that they have a caring adult.
-That there is always somebody there to support them.
-And empowering them to be proud of who they are.
-That's the most important part of my job.
-Unfortunately, with the coronavirus, we've all had to take our efforts to the Internet.
-I now have my classroom inside my living room.
-I have a lizard.
I have a snake.
Never did I expect to have to bring them all home and create a science lab in my apartment.
-I miss seeing my students' faces.
I miss giving them fist bumps and high-fives as they come and go.
-And what work means to me as a teacher is being able to provide stability during these trying times.
-I get to be a part of their journey from the very beginning.
-They have hope for the future that gives me hope.
-I am a teacher who loves teaching.
I live teaching.
It's in my DNA.
-My job is important, and I wouldn't trade this for anything.
-I miss all of you.
I miss 211.
Missing you on campus.
-We miss you, too.
It's so different.
-I reached out to some of my students.
A few of them actually contacted me about letters of recommendation.
-And then we're also filling out college apps.
Let's get to your essay.
-Just being able to have some sort of communication with those students fills my heart.
You have my number.
So in case anything ever comes up for the essay or emergency, you got -- you got that.
-Have a good night.
Thank you so much, Miss Macias.
I miss you.
-I miss you, too.
-I really miss teaching, like, very, very much.
I haven't heard anything else about a possibility of a job.
But I'm kinda stressed because I know a few people have already received interviews or placements in the San Diego district, and I haven't received anything, and I applied twice.
So... ♪♪ -Yes.
-Work, for me, means that things have changed dramatically.
This is the bunk bed where I sleep.
My family is upstairs.
I'm currently on a run of six shifts in a row because we're shorthanded.
I don't get to hug my kids when I come home.
My job is to make sure I protect my patients and my family.
♪♪ -I am an ER nurse.
-I'm a nurse practitioner.
-This is the best nurse right here.
-I'm a labor and delivery nurse.
-Yeah, I think she's posterior right now.
-I'm an ophthalmic technician.
-I'm a home health aide.
-Physical therapy aide.
-As an acute occupational therapist.
Here we go.
-For me, work means helping people in one of the most vulnerable times in their life.
-A day's work is finding ways to care for others and to help them in any way.
-Have empathy and patience.
-Putting your personal problems to the side so that you can be available for everyone else's.
-And that gives me a purpose.
-And even despite the current circumstance.
♪♪ -Truly caring and touching other people's lives has no price tag.
-I can't change the world.
I can't alleviate all the world's pains and all the suffering in the world, but I can make it better for one person every day, and I sleep well knowing I made a difference.
-You can see, with my eyes squinting, that I'm smiling.
-[ Laughs ] -Okay, so we had to stop for a quick little restroom break here at the rest area.
I'm trying to get you in the footage because pictures are not as meaningful without people you love.
-This is the only job that I ever felt like I belonged to.
My daddy was a truck driver.
And when I turned 21, I asked him to teach me how to drive a truck.
And he goes, "No daughter of mine is going to drive a truck.
You just ain't gonna do it."
So when I got my CDLs, I went to his grave, and I said, "See?
Told you I could do it."
Fifteen years later, I'm still doing it.
Go empty over there.
Go over yonder and check out.
-It's 2:00 in the morning, and I'm in Saint Louis, Missouri.
It's been about a week and a half, maybe a little bit more, since I've seen my son.
You know, that's really not that long by truck driver standards.
So, of course, it's not as good as seeing your kid every day.
So, yeah, it's just one of the drawbacks.
We got 15,000, it looks like.
That's where we're at on our miles bonus.
♪♪ We're on our way to Maryland.
Let's go, Ethel.
206 empty miles, 4,900 loaded miles.
♪♪ ♪♪ Just have to do the paperwork, and then I'm good to go.
♪♪ [ Bell dings ] -Hey, I have a question.
Our check-engine light just came on.
It says, "Electrical system problem detected."
Okay, thank you.
-This is the outside of our shop.
She went ahead and went in.
She brought the truck up.
If you find something wrong, you need to get it put in a shop as soon as possible.
All right, she's telling them about it and getting information.
It is important, even though we may lose that bonus.
They don't know how long the truck's gonna be in the shop.
That's not good.
♪♪ -To me, work means creating.
-I'm a visual artist.
-I am an architect.
-As an interior designer.
-I am a singer-songwriter.
-To me, work means being able to use my creativity to express myself.
-A day's work is art and culture.
-I did this in college, and I didn't think it was a viable thing to do as a career path.
-I had to create my own path.
-And make money with the art that I make.
-And I always tell myself I'm the luckiest person in the whole world to be doing this.
-And now I get to wake up every day and do something that I love, and others seem to love it, too.
-It really does bring people joy on a daily basis.
-A day's work is not a day's work if you enjoy what you're doing.
-I can't imagine doing anything else, and I just love what I do, and I'm grateful every day that I get to do it.
♪♪ [ Marching band playing ] -City Waste.
-We've gained a lot of community support.
Now we're kind of hoping to push the company into meeting our demands by taking our story to the media.
And for them to fix their trucks.
Majority of their trucks are broken.
They're leaking hydraulic fluid.
They leak on us.
When it comes to PPE, we definitely had to supply our own.
We never get any from the company.
♪♪ We have done a lot of interviews, videos, and we're finally getting a meeting.
They've agreed to meet with us and sit down and talk about these things.
It's been so long.
It's taken so much.
And, you know, we're expecting to have it come out with some success, you know?
-I never expected to be unemployed from January until now.
I was fired before COVID, and I've been trying to find a job since.
And it's really hard on my, you know, my mental state.
-I have been unemployed for the past six months.
-No paycheck since March.
-And it's been very hard.
-Besides the fact that I have no income whatsoever, as a person who's always out there interacting with people, oh, man, this hit me very hard.
-I can't provide for my family, can't provide for my wife and my daughter.
-And I was just depressed.
-I am navigating the unemployment system.
-I've been filling out applications.
-At my age, there are very few job opportunities left.
-Do you know how hard it is to get a job in a smaller town in the middle of a pandemic?
-No university degree, to get a job is next to impossible.
-It's really exhausting continually get denied by jobs.
-But I'm very hopeful that, in the near future, things will turn around for me.
-I just hope and pray every day that something changes, that God will see us through, and we just have faith.
I just got a call from High Tech Middle School, which is 45 minutes north of Chula Vista, and that interview is going to be this Thursday.
So, a lot of things are coming together, but I'm still gonna keep my options open and see.
But I'm excited.
More options are coming in.
Let's go for a run.
[ Dog barks ] ♪♪ I have been on quite a few teacher interviews already, but I always get nervous before each one.
The uncertainty of it all really does affect my anxiety.
♪♪ We'll see what happens.
[ Clears throat ] So identity in the classroom is gonna be really important.
Essentially, the goal is to show the students that they must not -- that they must not prioritize someone else's comfort over their identity.
And so, I want to include the student's identities in the classroom.
And I have done it in the past, but I wanna continue to do it in a better way.
-Thank you, Jessica.
-I'm trying to think positive.
I really hope something comes out of it.
♪♪ -We're getting our truck washed.
When you go into a shop, sometimes it takes them a while to get it done.
Yes, that's time that you're not making miles.
And if you're not making miles, you're not making money.
But it's gonna be better in the long run to get it taken care of.
So, Bloomington, California.
-This tells you how many miles we've done.
-It's a 30-day month instead of a 31-day month.
That could be a problem.
Right now, we're just... -Day by day.
-Day by day.
-He's right behind me.
-I can't see you, Mike.
There you are.
-Is he helping you?
-Miss you, boys.
He's grown over the summer.
Mike thinks he's grown a half-inch.
He's definitely filled out.
His legs are just so full.
It's like, what happened to my baby?
He's not little anymore.
He's just growing so fast.
♪♪ ♪♪ -Yeah.
♪♪ -Do not cross the picket line.
-My name's Amir.
I'm secretary of GEO Local 3550, American Federation of Teachers at the University of Michigan.
We've been on strike since Labor Day, fighting for a safe and just campus reopening.
It's been really exhilarating to be on the line with my colleagues.
-You're no good!
-Treat your workers like you should!
-We really feel like we're part of a movement here.
-I've seen firsthand the way our unions fight on the frontlines.
-What do we do?
-I'm a nurse here at UIC Medical Center.
-We're striking because administration failed to protect us and failed to protect the patients.
-We're not gonna let administration treat us like crap.
[ Cheers and applause ] [ Siren wailing ] -We need to know that we have job protection.
-Union recognition, a fair contract, higher wages, proper hazard pay, and better, safer working conditions.
-It's having a voice on the job.
-To have a real say.
-To fight back.
-To fight the good fight.
-To organize and build power.
-By standing shoulder to shoulder.
-Because we are all experiencing the same thing to different degrees.
-Everyone knows the cliché of strength in numbers, but nowhere is it more true than in the workplace.
-Who are we?
-Who are we?
-What do we want?
-When do we want it?
-Yeah, so we had this, uh... big meeting.
We couldn't record.
It wasn't a negotiation.
-It was something for them to hear us out as men, I guess, which really didn't lead us to anything.
-There was nothing we could tell the members of our group after the meeting was over other than, you know, in October, we might have a change.
It was a pointless meeting, a face-to-face pointless meeting.
-We're just, like I said, taking it one day at a time.
♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ -I've been on strike for five months.
We're at a really tough time right now.
You know, we're normally texting each other, phone calls... ...meeting up early in the morning.
None of that stuff has gone on this week.
We're all trying to figure out what's gonna happen next.
♪♪ "Well, we at work, man."
♪♪ -Some of us, you know, we had no choice.
We had to go back.
We was left with a choice to either stay on the strike line and be out here trying to figure a way out to pay, you know, for your family.
Be homeless and believe in what's right, or I can just go back to work.
♪♪ -I haven't gone back to work yet.
Myself and several others are still out.
You know, we aren't comfortable with the demands not being met.
Looking back to the beginning of the strike and our expectations, up to where we are now, it has been, you know, quite the lesson.
The trials and tribulations of what came at us and what has gone on, nobody's ready for that kind of stuff.
I'm not gonna say I wouldn't do it again because I'm sure I probably would stand up for myself, you know?
♪♪ -I had an interview this morning with High Tech Middle School over in San Marcos, and I just got a call offering me a job.
[ Chuckles ] I have a job.
Everything's coming together finally.
Oh, I'm so happy.
Slow down, slow down, slow down, slow down, slow down.
-I just got a job!
-I just got a job!
-I just got a job!
[ Both laugh ] -I came to a realization that what I went through with the pink slip process was necessary for me to continue to grow.
And I like to think of it as a breakup.
But I landed on my own two feet.
I'm Jessica Macias.
I will be in eighth grade humanities.
And I will also be doing the EL coordinator position.
-So, everyone, go on to Google Classroom and open up the Note Catcher.
Now that I'm back teaching... [ Sighs ] ...I feel like everything's right again.
I like to think that, okay, now I made a difference in the lives of students down here in Chula Vista.
And now I can make a difference in the lives of different students, especially those Hispanic students that are up north and don't really get to see teachers that are of the same race.
So, this will be my new classroom.
♪♪ Thank you, Ma.
-Thank you, babe.
Thank you, Nick.
♪♪ -So, we've talked to dispatch, and I'm planning on just going on home four days early.
And it'll be less money -- less miles, less money -- but it's gonna be okay because I get to be with the family.
So I'm actually pretty excited.
Good to see you, good to see you.
-Laura's getting ready to leave me.
-Put that in the back with me.
-See you later.
-Won't be leaving for a while.
Bye, my second family.
♪♪ [ Waves crashing ] ♪♪ It's gorgeous.
Let's go swimming!
-Some pools, they go and go do this, to where it's slanted like that.
-Time goes by so fast.
[ Kitten meows ] [ Laughs ] I want to enjoy time with my family and do things with my family.
I work so that we can do those things.
-Ooh, he might be 24 inches there, now.
-And hopefully, eventually build a house.
But, you know, it may be a while, and, you know, at least I have my family.
Don't give you belly raspberries all the time.
-You haven't done that in a long time.
And I don't want that to happen.
-You don't want belly raspberries?
It's all right.
[ Laughs ] I do love my job.
I love getting behind the wheel and just looking out at the different scenery, the open road.
Just everything about it.
I'm pretty confident we're gonna get our bonus for September.
We still roll.
We still roll hard, you know?
[ Both laugh ]