Weekly Update: Stand Together

Standing Together Against Hatred

Oregon AFL-CIO President Tom Chamberlain responds to the brutal attack on May 26 in Northeast Portland:

“The unions of the Oregon AFL-CIO offer our sincere condolences to the families and friends of Taliesin Namkai-Meche and Ricky John Best, and we hope Micah David-Cole Fletcher has a complete recovery. The actions these three took demonstrates a unique combination of bravery and compassion. We hope the two young women who endured a hate-fueled verbal assault can process and ultimately heal from what I can only imagine to be a deeply devastating experience.”

“Incidents of hate and hate crimes have been on the rise in our country and Friday’s violence remind Oregonians that we all must stand together in opposition to those who seek to divide us through fear and violence. Oregonians are sickened and disturbed by Friday’s events, and I encourage all of us to stand together and continue to take positive actions to protect the rights of us all. It’s through unity and solidarity that we will heal from this tragic incident. It’s through standing together against hatred that we can stop events like this from happening again.”

Take Action for a Fair Work Week

Come show your support for a fair work week in Oregon! We’ll be gathering signatures at the Fair Work Week Ballot Signature Canvass Launch this Saturday, June 3rd at 1:30pm at the Oregon Working Families Party headquarters at 333 SE 2nd Ave in Portland. Lunch and training for volunteers will be provided.

Please RSVP to IJohnson@workingfamilies.org

Two Movements, One Goal

This article is by Richard Womack Sr., James Settles Jr., and Robin Williams, and appears courtesy of the AFL-CIO Now Blog.

“A community is democratic only when the humblest and weakest person can enjoy the highest civil, economic and social rights that the biggest and most powerful possess.” - A. Philip Randolph    

One of our most celebrated labor leaders, A. Philip Randolph, an organizer of the 1963 March on Washington, knew the connection between the labor movement and the civil rights movement was key to a truly inclusive democracy. He stood for access at the ballot box as well as to economic security—ideally through a good job with decent benefits and a union. Today, we find ourselves back in a place where our civil, economic, political and social rights are under constant attack. The violence we see against black youth—the heart-wrenching killing of Trayvon Martin, the homicide of Jordan Davis--the passage of “right to work” laws in states like Michigan, Missouri and Iowa that have deeply racist and divisive roots, and the constant attack on immigrant communities by the current administration affirm we still have work to do.

As trade unionists, labor leaders, parents and civil rights activists, we have dedicated our time, talent and resources to advancing the agenda for people who are simply working for a better life. We believe there has never been a more critical point in our nation’s history when it is so crucial for us to reconnect deeply the movement for working people with the movement for civil and human rights. We cannot forget that the March on Washington was about freedom, economic equity and good jobs. The intersection of human rights, civil rights and workers’ rights has always been a part of our struggles for independent power both here and abroad. We must continue to uplift those movements in an intersectional way to ensure we are able to win justice at the workplace and the ballot box to make a difference for those we serve.

This summer, one of the oldest and largest civil and human rights organizations, the NAACP, will come to the city of Baltimore for its annual convention. The NAACP has stood as a coalition partner to the labor movement since 1909. There are many organizations we as a movement value and partner with through shared program and the NAACP remains one of those core allies, despite the shifts that happen in the world around us. We have great leadership within both the labor movement and the NAACP. We have seen how powerful it is when leaders like AFT’s Lorretta Johnson stand shoulder to shoulder with the Rev. William Barber, leader of the NAACP North Carolina State Conference. We know our journey together must continue as we fight to assure that “the humblest and weakest person can enjoy the highest civil, economic and social rights that the biggest and most powerful possess.”

We must expand our vision by creating solidarity without borders so that working people will be treated with the respect we are due. Thus our history and our very purpose demand that we be in the forefront of the struggle to assure first-class citizenship to all people, of all colors, and all creeds without regard to sex, sexual orientation or gender identity. Our struggles are one; our hopes are one; our dreams are one. The past is not dead, it's not even past.

To participate in the 2017 NAACP Labor Luncheon in Baltimore, please click here: cvent.com/d/n5q3qx

James Settles Jr., also known as Jimmy, serves as a vice president and member of the Executive Board at the UAW. He is a national board member and Labor Committee vice-chair of the NAACP.

Robin Williams serves as the national vice president of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW). She is a national board member and Labor Committee vice-chair of the NAACP.

Richard Womack Sr. is the emeritus assistant to the AFL-CIO president and former director of the AFL-CIO Civil, Human and Women’s Rights Department. He is a national board member and Labor Committee chair of the NAACP.

Reminder: Young Emerging Labor Leaders Happy Hour Tomorrow in Portland

Don’t miss this opportunity to meet fellow union members and young emerging labor leaders at the Lagunitas Community Room in Portland. All proceeds will be donated to Labor’s Community Service Agency. Union members over the age of 18 are welcome, but must be 21+ to purchase and consume alcohol. Food will be provided!

Young Emerging Labor Leaders Happy Hour

Thursday, June 1, 2017 - 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Lagunitas Community Room-
237 NE Broadway St Suite 300
Portland, OR 97232

Resistance Summer Kick-Off

Don’t miss the Resistance Summer Kick-Off Call with Sen. Jeff Merkley, Rep. Suzanne Bonamici and more on Friday, June 2 at 5:45pm. Click here for more information and to sign up.