Fight for $15 movement plans fast-food workers’ strike across south

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/feb/01/fight-for-15-movement-plans-fast-food-workers-strike-across-south

Fight for $15

Organization marks 50th anniversary of Memphis sanitation workers’ strike as it joins Poor People’s Campaign to honor Martin Luther King

Terrence Wise, a McDonald’s worker in Kansas City who is one of the Fight for $15’s national leaders, supports Barber’s new effort. “For the Fight for $15 to join with the Poor People’s Campaign makes our network broader and more powerful,” Wise said. “We’re bringing not only workers who are poor, but we’re bringing more people into the campaign who are affected by racial and economic inequality. It’s always good to get bigger and bolder.”

The Rev William Barber II stands outside the National Civil Rights Museum following a march by Fight for $15 supporters last year.

Dream Defendeers: #FreeAhed

http://www.dreamdefenders.org/freeahed

On December 15th, 2017, 15-year-old Mohammad Tamimi was shot in the face by an Israeli soldier while participating in an unarmed protest of Trump’s Jerusalem declaration. Just minutes later, his 16-year-old cousin Ahed rose up to protect her family’s home after two armed soldiers invaded her yard. For over 50 years, the Israeli army has stationed itself on Palestinian land in order to enforce its violent military occupation of the West Bank. Ahed stood her ground and asked the soldiers to leave. When they refused and tried to use her property as a base from which to shoot at protesters, she slapped one of them.

Ahed was arrested a few days later in the middle of the night. Her cousin Noor and her mother Nariman were also arrested. All three have been indicted by Israel’s military court, which has a 99.7% conviction rate and lacks basic fair trial protections. Ahed has been denied bail and her trial will begin February 12th. Both Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have called for her release.

In the US, we know all too well what it’s like to be oppressed simply because you exist, because you refuse to give up your fight for freedom. Last year, a Dream Defenders delegation of artists traveled to Palestine to bear witness to life under Israel military occupation and met the Tamimi family in their village of Nabi Saleh. Songs and stories of struggle were shared, from the US to Palestine. The Tamimis spoke about their daily lives — the Israeli army patrolling and shooting into their streets as their children play, Israeli settlers stealing their water. The delegation learned that every year hundreds of Palestinian kids across the West Bank are arrested and detained by Israeli soldiers and police who kick, punch, and beat them. Torture is routinely used to get signed confessions from children, mainly on charges of stone throwing.  

While our struggles may be unique, the parallels cannot be ignored. US police, ICE, border patrol and FBI train with Israeli soldiers, police, and border agentsutilizing similar repressive profiling tactics to target and harass our communities. Too many of our children quickly learn that they may be imprisoned or killed simply for who they are. From Trayvon Martin to Mohammed Abu Khdeir and Khalif Browder to Ahed Tamimi – racism, state violence and mass incarceration have robbed our people of their childhoods and their futures.

In a bold move to protect Palestinian children like Ahed from widespread abuse by Israeli forces, Rep. Betty McCollum of Minnesota introduced an unprecedented bill last November entitled: Promoting Human Rights by Ending Israeli Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act. The bill has 22 co-sponsors and counting.

We the undersigned call on all US representatives to sign this bill and protect the lives and childhoods of Palestinian children.  

The Tamimi family stands up to Israel’s brutality because they believe Palestinians, like ALL  people, should be free. Dream Defenders stands with them and all Palestinians in their righteous struggle. Now, and always, we commit to building a more just and loving world for us all.

#FreeAhed #nowaytotreatachild

SIGNATORIES
Danny Glover
Jesse Williams
Michelle Alexander
Rosario Dawson
Tom Morello
Angela Davis
Michael Bennett
Alice Walker
Vic Mensa
Talib Kweli
Ladybug Mecca
Angela Rye
Cornel West
Patrisse Cullors
Marc Lamont Hill
Alicia Garza
Tunde Adebimpe
Gary Clark Jr.
LisaGay Hamilton
Emory Douglas
dream hampton
Robin D.G. Kelley
B Mike
Tef Poe
Kam Franklin
Michael McBride
Jasiri X

unnamed_(2).jpg

Justice in the Factory: How Black Lives Matter Breathed New Life into Unions

https://portside.org/2018-02-11/justice-factory-how-black-lives-matter-breathed-new-life-unions

After decades of decline unions have found a new champion in efforts to organize workers: the Black Lives Matter movement.

Unions have suffered as manufacturing has moved south away from their old strongholds in the north of the US. Membership rates were 10.7% in 2016, down from 20.1% in 1983, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. At the same time the shift from manufacturing to service industry jobs has hurt them too.

But as the Black Lives Matter and other social justice campaigns increasingly focus on economic justice, unions see a new opportunity. And ironically, a series of defeats for labor in the south is helping to fire up recruitment drives and attracting international support in the process.

Last August’s bitterly fought attempt to unionize Nissan’s plant in Canton, Mississippi is a case in point and one that labor leaders say has made multinationals wary of becoming embroiled in high-profile union-busting drives lead primarily by black workers.

Milwaukee, March 8: Women Against Hate

Hosted by UBLAC Milwaukee

Hate divides. But hate also unites. It bonds us together, we find each other, and we grow louder, and reach a pitch that must be heard.

WOMEN AGAINST HATE, a new traveling art exhibition, uses art as the platform for an anti-hate campaign. Featuring bold visual illustrations and powerful messaging this activism-based art exhibition amplifies and projects female voices in an effort to combat current hate rhetoric directed at immigrant communities, racial and religious minorities, and other marginalized groups.

Join us March 8th at City Hall for an inaugural traveling art exhibition and rally titled Women Against Hate United by Love at 6:30 p.m. Visitwww.wearewomenagainsthate.org for additional details.

Come out to support this diverse group of women of color and hear their stories along with UBLAC core and founding members Astar Herndon and Keisha Robinson.

Thank you to the artists and visionaries Kelly Parks Snider, Rachel Griifin, and Leigh Garcia. They will explore highly charged issues in their new exhibition using visual illustrations and messaging. United together women share stories of injustice, tragedy, strength, and amazingly, hope.

Image may contain: 3 people, text

PROTEST: Visa denial to the WFTU General Secretary by the USA government

http://www.wftucentral.org/protest-visa-denial-to-the-wftu-general-secretary-by-the-usa-government/

As World Federation of Trade Unions, we denounce the government of the USA which has denied granting to the WFTU General Secretary George Mavrikos an entry visa to the US.

The WFTU General Secretary has scheduled a visit to the USA for March 2018 to attend an event of the United Nations in New York, where he is a permanent representative of the WFTU, and to participate as main speaker in the annual trade union meeting of Trade Union Organizations members and friends of WFTU that will take place the same month in Los Angeles, USA.

We followed the procedure of ESTA but unfortunately the persistent answer from the competent USA state authorities was negative.

This position of the US Department of State is antidemocratic and aims at preventing the free trade union action and the strengthening of the militant trade union movement of the workers in the USA. At the same time, it is a deliberated discrimination against the WFTU and against its right to fulfill its role within the United Nations, a role that has possessed since 1945. The USA governments do not like the consistent anti-imperialist, anti-monopolist line of the WFTU, and they think that through antidemocratic prohibitions they will stop our internationalist action in favor of the peoples who struggle to decide on their own, in a free and democratic way, about their present and future. But they will never manage this, no matter how many anti-democratic, racist discriminations they make against the international militant trade union movement.

We also addressed the embassy of the USA in Athens without receiving a positive answer.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs of Greece was also informed, but the coalition government of SYRIZA and of far-rightist ANEL neither wants nor is able to assure the right of free movement of the citizens of Greece to the USA.

At the same time, trade union Organizations in the USA sent a letter of protest to the US Secretary of State, Mr. Tillerson, but until today no solution has been found.

The answer of the USA competent authorities to all these legal actions we proceeded to so as to issue a visa, was that we should apply to be exempted from the “Terrorist Travel” System.

These actions are provocative and unacceptable. The WFTU is a massive, class oriented, international Trade Union Organization with 92 million members in 126 countries all over the world. Since its foundation, in October 1945 until today, its history is public and well known. It has never been servile towards imperialists or multinationals. Nor now will it sell its history.

At the same time, the prohibition of entry of the WFTU General Secretary into the USA points out one more question. How is possible for International Organizations to operate in the USA, since their government randomly sets out antidemocratic rules and arbitrary restrictions about visa issuing. We are awaiting with interest the position of the competent services of the United Nations on this subject, since the USA prohibit the entrance of the WFTU legal representative into the country where the United Nations Headquarters are located.

On the basis of this situation we ask a legal visa to be granted to the General Secretary of the WFTU and all these discriminations against WFTU cadres to stop.

We assure the workers of the USA that irrespectively of any difficulties and obstacles, the WFTU will stand by their side in their fair struggles. Internationalism and solidarity are the unbeatable weapons of workers and peoples.

THE SECRETARIAT, http://www.wftucentral.org/protest-visa-denial-to-the-wftu-general-secretary-by-the-usa-government/

 

Detroit, March 24, 2018: National Conference to Defeat Austerity

Hosted by Moratorium NOW! Coalition and Organizing the National Conference to Defeat Austerity

St. Matthew’s – St. Joseph’s Church, 8850 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48202, 10 A.M. – 5 P.M. 

Endorsers: http://moratorium-mi.org/national-conference-to-defeat-austerity-endorsers/

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, crowd

We want to extend an invitation to all progressive activists and organizations to participate in the National Conference to Fight Austerity in Detroit on Saturday March 24. The purpose of the national conference is to map out a strategy for defeating the war being waged by the banks, corporations and government against the workers and oppressed. Capitalism cannot continue unchallenged while our very lives are being jeopardized by the ruling elites who are determined to grow richer and more powerful at our expense, whipping up white supremacy, an anti-immigrant offensive attacks on women and anti-LGBTQ bigotry to keep our class divided.

Detroit along with colonized Puerto Rico has been at the epicenter of bank imposed austerity against the workers and oppressed in this hemisphere. But every U.S. city from Chicago to Baltimore to Cleveland to Milwaukee, from New York City to Oakland and Seattle, has felt the brunt of this attack in the form of cutbacks, school closings, mass transit cuts, water shutoffs, gentrification and destruction of public service unions.

The Trump tax plan and Pentagon War build-up continues the massive transfer of wealth to the rich at the expense of the poor. This war by the banks and on the workers and poor is an international phenomenon spanning every continent. On March 24, we will hammer out a program on how to fight back against the war by the corporations, the banks and their lackeys in government at all levels on the workers and poor.

The conference will take up topics such as:
* The Destruction of our Communities by the Banks.
* Tax giveaways to Dan Gilbert and the Ilitch business empire and gentrifiers everywhere.
* The Trump Tax plan — A declaration of war by and for the rich on the workers and the poor.
* The Pentagon War Buildup — funded by destruction of social services.* Continuing Water Shutoffs and Mass foreclosures.
*The Destruction of public educations through defunding and privatization.
* Mass layoffs at retail stores, restaurants, business offices and plant closings* Fighting for a real living wage for all workers.
* Challenging racism, sexism and LGBTQ oppression.
* Defending Immigrant Rights.
* Challenging mass incarceration and prison slave labor.
* Defending Puerto Rico where much the population remains without electricity because of mass robbery by the banks.
* The need for a universal healthcare program* Public transportation and accessibility for all within the urban and rural areas.
*The growth in extreme poverty and homelessness.
* Environmental Justice and the end to the poisoning of the poor.
*Full rights for persons with disabilities.

The Conference will discuss these issues in depth from the perspective of how they all are products of a capitalist system where profits are everything and people mean nothing. We will mobilize support for making May Day 2018 an anti-Austerity Day, as well as lending solidarity to the Poor Peoples Campaign. We will outline a program of action in solidarity with all movements working for social change and transformation.

Initiated by the Moratorium Now! Coalition.
For information or to endorse: contact 313-680-5508 – moratorium-mi.org – moratorium@moratorium-mi.org