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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: May 1 Coalition for Workers and Immigrants’ Rights
Tony Murphy (347) 602-1584 / Teresa Gutierrez (917) 328-6470
Immigrants and Unions United to Fight Cutbacks and Demand Jobs
May 1 Coalition for Workers and Immigrants’ Rights Statement on the Revival of International Workers Day in the U.S.
NATIONWIDE - May 1 - International Workers Day in the U.S. was resuscitated by the immigrant workers’ movement. Now of necessity it is being embraced by the wider working class.
On May 1, 2011, in cities large and small, the union and immigrant movements are uniting – in order to fight back together against austerity, racism and cutbacks.
In 2006, hundreds of thousands of immigrants took to the streets against the anti-immigrant Sensenbrenner bill. The powerful culmination that spring was May 1, when – one year after the call by the Million Worker March to revive May Day – a million immigrant workers nationwide stayed home from work, walked off the job and demonstrated in huge rallies.
Since then, every year the immigrant workers’ rights movement has demonstrated on May 1, putting International Workers Day back on the map in the land of its birthplace.
Now in 2011, in New York, Buffalo, Houston, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Boston, members of the labor movement – facing a deadly assault from Wall Street – have chosen on this May Day to march side by side with their immigrant brothers and sisters. AFL-CIO head Richard Trumka is addressing tens of thousands of union and immigrant workers in Milwaukee.
The uniting of these two powerful forces helps push back the racism now being viciously promoted in the form of deportations, show-us-your-papers laws and attacks on ethnic studies.
Pushing back racism strengthens and widens the movement – a necessary step as Wall Street ratchets up the suffering of the working class through school closings, layoffs, slashed wages, looted pensions and foreclosures.
The students who took over the school board meeting in Tucson, the longshore workers in California who held a one-day strike in support of Wisconsin public sector workers – as the movements come together, all are now part of a broader movement for workers’ rights.
Wisconsin teachers and students revived the labor movement. Immigrant workers revived May Day. Together they can beat back Wall Street.
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