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Announcement :: Labor
March on DC
11 Sep 2004
for more info go to www.millionworkermarch.org
ONLY OUR OWN INDEPENDENT MOBILIZATION OF WORKING PEOPLE ACROSS AMERICA CAN OPEN THE WAY TO ADDRESSING OUR NEEDS AND OUR AGENDA.
JOIN US, BROTHERS AND SISTERS, IN A HISTORIC MOVEMENT TO RESTORE OUR DEMOCRACY, SECURE POWER FOR THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF WORKING PEOPLE AND RESTORE AMERICA.
Learn why we need a Million Worker March.
Listen to Clarence Thomas of ILWU Local 10 and Ralph Schoenman of Pacifica Radio explain in detail the causes for and benefits of a Million Worker march on Washington. This interview was broadcast on KPFA - Guns and Butter with host Bonnie Faulkner: click here to listen.
Thirty-six years ago Martin Luther King, Jr. summoned working people across America to a Poor Peoples' March on Washington to inaugurate "a war on poverty at home."
"The United States government," he proclaimed, "is one of the greatest purveyors of violence in the world ...America is at a crossroads in history and it is critically important for us as a nation and society to choose a new path and move on it with resolution and courage"
The crisis facing working people today is even more acute. Under the cover of systematic lies and deception, wars of devastation have been launched at the expense of working people everywhere.
In our name, a handful of the rich and powerful corporations have usurped our government. A corporate and banking oligarchy changes hats and occupies public office to wage class war on working people. They have captured the State in their own interests.
The vast majority of working Americans are under siege. Social services and essential funding for schools, libraries, affordable housing and health care are slashed and eliminated.
Decent paying jobs are disappearing through outsourcing and privatization whose real purpose is to break unions and roll back the gains of one hundred years of struggle.
Sweat shops and starvation wages are imposed on workers across the world and deployed against workers at home to undermine our jobs and our benefits.
This undisguised class war is waged without restraint against working families and our children, enforced by anti-labor legislation and decrees, and by courts serving our exploiters.
The aim of repressive legislation such as the Patriot Act is to terrorize and suppress the struggles of working people for their rights, and to destroy democratic control of the economy and of society. The pretext of enemies afar becomes a smoke screen for repression and autocratic rule.
The time has come to mobilize working people for our own agenda. Let us end subservience to the power of the privileged few and their monopoly of the political process in America.
Come together, brothers and sisters. Join The Million Worker March on Washington as we launch a great movement for social change. Let us forge together a social, economic and political movement for working people. We are the many .The secretive and corrupt who control our lives are the rapacious few.
Let us mobilize together through our unions, labor councils, social and community organizations, friends and neighbors everywhere. We are on the move and we shall not be denied.
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We Seek to Secure:
- Universal single-care health care from cradle to grave that ends the stranglehold of greedy insurance companies and secures health care as a right of all people in America.
- A national living wage that lifts people permanently out of poverty.
- Protection and enhancement of Social Security immune to privatization.
- Guaranteed pensions that sustain a decent life for all working people.
- The cancellation of all corporate "free" trade agreements, including NAFTA, MAI and FTAA.
- An end to privatization, contracting out, deregulation and the pitting of workers against each other across national boundaries in a mad race to the bottom.
- For workers' right to organize and for a repeal of Taft Hartley and all anti-labor legislation.
- Funding public education in a crash program to restore our decaying and abandoned schools with state of the art school facilities in every community.
- Funding a vast army of teachers to end functional illiteracy in America and unleash the talent and potential of our abandoned children and adults.
- Launching a national training program in skills and capacities that will enlist our people in rebuilding our country and putting an end to both the criminalization of poverty and the prison-industrial complex.
- Rebuilding our decaying inner cities with clean, modern and affordable housing and eliminating homelessness in America with guaranteed housing and jobs for all.
- Progressive taxation that increases taxation on corporations and the rich while providing relief for the working class and poor.
- An end to the poisoning of the atmosphere, soil, water and food supply with a national emergency program to restore the environment, end global warming and preserve our endangered eco-system.
- Creating efficient, modern and free mass transit in every city and town.
- Repeal of the Patriot Act, Anti-Terrorism Act and all such repressive legislation.
- Slash the military budget and recover the trillions of dollars stolen from our labor to enrich the corporations that profit from war.
- Open the books on the secret budgets of the Pentagon and the intelligence agencies in the service of corporations and banks and the pursuit of imperial war on the poor everywhere.
- Extend democracy to our economic structure so that all decisions affecting the lives of our citizens are made by working people who produce all value through their labor.
- An aggressive enforcement of all civil rights and a national education campaign and mobilization against all racist and discriminatory acts in the work place and in our communities.
- Amnesty for all undocumented workers
- Increase in federal funding for the Arts in public schools
- For a democratic media that allow labor and all voices to be heard and oppose monopolization and union busting of media workers.
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Whereas: our ancestors fought tirelessly in this country for the right to organize unions and ensure that our government recognized this right because it is a cornerstone of democracy, and
Whereas: that because of unions and solidarity among working people we have been able to win basic human rights, including employer paid health care, social security and retirement benefits, safe working conditions, decent hours and wages, education for our children, social services for the disadvantaged, civil liberties, and most important, the right to political influence over our nation's foreign and domestic policies, and
Whereas: Franklin D. Roosevelt, in his State of the Union address in 1944 acknowledged our rights, saying, "We have come to the realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. Necessitous men are not free men. People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made." and
Whereas: the current administration, with the complicity of congress, has cooperated with big business in attacking our rights, using legislation such as the Patriot Acts I and II, denying the right of hundreds of thousands of Federal employees to belong to unions and bargain, forcing long shore workers to work under a Taft-Hartley Act injunction and threats of Federal intervention, and
Whereas: the administration, with the complicity of congress, has negotiated trade agreements costing the jobs of hundreds of thousands of US workers, calling this a move towards a healthy economy, while promoting other economic policies, such as privatization and deregulation which has resulted in the loss of over 3 million jobs since taking office, and
Whereas: the administration, with the complicity of congress has given corporations and the wealthy huge tax breaks, while cutting billions of dollars in spending for social services, education, and other government programs won by working people through decades of effort, and
Whereas: the Bush administration, with the complicity of congress, has excused all these policies by using the terrible events of September 11 to label any opposition unpatriotic and a threat to national security, has taken our country into an unjust war under the false assertion that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, costing the lives of hundreds of US service members and innocent Iraqi civilians, and is whipping up fear and even further to try to stampede the public into giving it another term in office,
Be it therefore resolved: that Local 10 of the ILWU calls on unions and working people generally to go to Washington DC for a Million Worker March, to demand that politicians and the administration listen to the people who pay their salaries, rather than the voices of big business and the rich, and more
Be it further resolved: that this resolution be forwarded to unions, labor councils and labor organizations, as well as other organizations to which workers belong, whether organized or not, so that they can take similar action to organize this March as soon as possible.
Be it finally resolved: that this event coincide with all labor organized voter registration drives planned for the next election.
This work is in the public domain