New York, NY – This Yuletide season, while the Janus v. AFSCME case continues to percolate inside the U.S. Supreme Court and
so-called “Right-To-Work” legislation grips GOP-controlled state houses across the land — union households can keep the Grinch at bay with a wonderful new children’s book that warmly illustrates both the profundity of giving and the power of collective action.
Inspired by true-life events, Good Guy Jake (Buen Chico Jake) from Hardball Press, tells the story of a kindly union sanitation worker who gets unjustly canned after a crabby motorist reports him for pilfering broken toys from the trash at Christmas time.
Never mind that Jake has been collecting the toys, imbuing them with new life, and redistributing them to poor kids in the neighborhood for years. It seems Jake has violated municipal regulations against such good works, and is summarily canned for his actions.
Somewhere, St. Nick sheds a tear.
All is not lost, however, because as everyone knows, Santa Claus is a dyed-in-the-wool trade unionist who has long stood at the very forefront of the organized labor movement. Bolstered by the sprit of Christmas, Jake’s union defies his Scrooge-like sacking, and demands the case be brought to arbitration.
In illustrations brimming with childlike innocence, the bilingual tale takes a turn right out of “Miracle on 34th Street” when the neighborhood kids pour in the courtroom bearing all the refurbished toys Jake has unselfishly bestowed upon them over the years.
Faced with such a showing, the wise judge is left with no other choice but to award Jake his sanitation job back.
In no time at all, and mirroring the altruism that trade unionists routinely demonstrate in real life, the “Good Guy Jake Toy Drive” is instituted and newly revamped toys are distributed to needly children living in shelters throughout the city.
Mark Torres, general counsel for Teamsters Local 810 pens the soon-to-be-Christmas classic and Yana Murashko provides the captivating illustrations.
Recently speaking to LaborPress’ Blue Collar Buzz, Torres commented, “Just last week, I read the book to my daughter’s class. At the end there were questions & answers. I asked, ‘Does anyone here think that Jake would have any chance of getting his job back if he was not a union member?’ All of them said, ‘No!’
Joy to the world!
Pick up your copy of Good Guy Jake at hardballpress.com