Joining The ILWU 1 Day Action  

What Are you Doing on May 1st?

I’m planning to support the International Longshore and Warehouse Union by not working the day shift on May 1st.


To protest the Iraq War
Take a look at their commitment to this One Day –Strike- Meeting:

ILWU International President Robert McEllrath has written letters to President John Sweeney of the AFL-CIO and President Andy Stern of the Change-to-Win Coalition, and to the presidents of the International Transport Workers Federation and the International Dockworkers Council to inform them of the ILWU's plans for May 1.

More from the ILWU's call to action:
Longshore Caucus calls for Iraq war protest at ports on May 1

Nearly one hundred Longshore Caucus delegates voted on February 8 to support a resolution calling for an eight-hour "stop-work" meeting during the day-shift on Thursday, May 1 at ports in CA, OR and WA to protest the war by calling for the immediate, safe return of U.S. troops from Iraq.

“The Caucus has spoken on this important issue and I’ve notified the employers about our plans for 'stop work' meetings on May 1,” said ILWU International President Bob McEllrath.

Caucus delegates, including several military veterans, spoke passionately about the importance of supporting the troops by bringing them home safely and ending the War in Iraq. Concerns were also raised about the growing cost of the war that has threatened funding for domestic needs, including education and healthcare. Nobel prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz and Harvard economist Linda J. Bilmes recently estimated that the true cost of the War in Iraq to American taxpayers will exceed 3 trillion dollars--a figure they describe as "conservative."

The union’s International Executive Board recently endorsed Barack Obama, citing his opposition to the War in Iraq as one of the key factors in the union's decision-making process.

The ILWU was one (if not the first) union to integrate, having done so in 1936. Both black and white gangs (work crews) worked alongside each other on the docks and held together during the strike of 1936. Integrating the union meant that when they had to strike, owners and bosses couldn’t race bate the workers, a management practice still in use today (check out Smithfield justice for more on this).

My point here about the ILWU is that it is a very progressive union. They do things democratically; including this action on the Iraq war, in fact, they even say as much:

Caucus delegates are democratically elected representatives from every longshore local who set policy for the Longshore Division.

And in support of the actions taken by the caucus,

On May 1st, I will buy no products, travel no where, pay for no services, nor will I work. For 8 hours on May 1st, I’ll remember the more than 4,000 American soldiers who have fallen, the countless thousands who have come back without legs, arms, eyes or the ability to walk. I will remember those now in mental hospitals and all those now living on the streets, still at war in their heads. I will remember all the innocent lives lost in Iraq, children, elderly, mothers, fathers, and I will keep in mind that we can change it all this November.

So, I’m asking again, do you know what you’re doing on May 1st?


AddThis Social Bookmark Button


Post a Comment