Stories by Michelle Chen

Michelle Chen is a contributing editor at In These Times, a contributor to Working In These Times, and an editor at CultureStrike. She is also a co-producer of Asia Pacific Forum on Pacifica's WBAI. Her work has appeared on Alternet,, Ms., and The Nation, Newsday, and her old zine, cain. Follow her on Twitter at @meeshellchen or reach her at michellechen [at] inthesetimes [dot] com. subscribe to Michelle Chen's feed

Posted on: Aug 16, 2012, Source: In These Times

Evidence has been building over the years of a respiratory illness primarily afflicting factory workers exposed to the microwave-popcorn butter flavorant, diacetyl (DA).

Posted on: Aug 5, 2012, Source: In These Times

A new bill in Congress would give the Mine Safety and Health Administration broader powers to keep corporations like Massey from abusing workers and risking their lives.

Posted on: Jul 29, 2012, Source: In These Times

The Restaurant Opportunities Center has been fighting and winning battles for waiters and other restaurant staff around the country.

Posted on: Jul 22, 2012, Source: In These Times

Labor activists with the Playfair 2012 campaign have seized the Olympic arena as a platform to spotlight how labor gets cheated around the world.

Posted on: Jul 22, 2012, Source: In These Times

For many workers in the sex trade, protecting their health on the job could land them in jail.

Posted on: Jul 8, 2012, Source: In These Times

Apple’s power over China’s workforce extends to many other suppliers. A new report drills down to the lesser-known plants that piece together our hand-held devices.

Posted on: Jul 3, 2012, Source: AlterNet

The utility company has locked out 8,500 workers, leaving a skeleton staff of untrained managers to run the city's power grid during a searing heat wave.

Posted on: Jul 2, 2012, Source: In These Times

A court has ruled that Louisiana stole funds from thousands of school employees after Hurricane Katrina. That's good news for teachers -- but NOLA's schools are still struggling.

Posted on: Jun 26, 2012, Source: In These Times

The White House is touting the Trans-Pacific Partnership as a "21st century" trade deal, but many activists see it as a regression into economic imperialism.

Posted on: Jun 21, 2012, Source: In These Times

Working long hours amid noxious fumes, salon workers are in constant contact with chemicals linked to various illnesses and reproductive health problems.

Posted on: Jun 5, 2012, Source: AlterNet

Nato Green, a union organizer-turned-comedian, talks to AlterNet about bringing race, class and gender analyses to comedy and his work with Laughter Against the Machine.

Posted on: Jun 3, 2012, Source: In These Times

National Nurses United is pushing to establish nationwide nurse-ratio guidelines in acute-care facilities, and to strengthen training programs to build the nursing workforce.

Posted on: May 27, 2012, Source: AlterNet

It should be no surprise that on America’s farms, many women are treated as less than human, since not even the government sees them as worthy of respect under the law.

Posted on: May 22, 2012, Source: The New Press

In this excerpt from the new book "Labor Rising: The Past and Future of Working People in America," Michelle Chen looks at young workers from Egypt to Wisconsin.

Posted on: May 17, 2012, Source: In These Times

By raising barriers to economic assistance and legal recourse, the legislation sends the message to countless women living in violent households that their place is still at home.

Posted on: May 13, 2012, Source: In These Times

Geopolitics turned humanitarian workers and refugees into hostages of a budget war that makes life for the community absurdly hard, from seeing a doctor to earning a paycheck.

Posted on: May 7, 2012, Source: In These Times

While racist hostility pervades the mainstream political arena, Occupy may be one of the only spaces left for immigrants to speak up without fear.

Posted on: Apr 29, 2012, Source: In These Times

Labor and human rights groups in both countries argue that the agreement would effectively condone violence against activists and economic oppression.

Posted on: Apr 29, 2012, Source: In These Times

Suicide starts to seem a strangely rational measure of life’s cheapness in a monetized society--people’s logical response to a loss of control over their destinies.

Posted on: Apr 19, 2012, Source: In These Times

The question we should be asking is not whether domestic caregiving is more or less important than wage work—they’re both crucial, and crucially different.