As Momentum Builds
For the information of our readers we reprint below an “update” from organizers of the Million Worker March and a news story about the March from the October 14 Washington Post.
Million Worker March Update (October 13)
IMPORTANT BUS INFORMATION
The Million Worker March is only 4 days away. Momentum is building for this historic event.
Activists and groups are busy e-mailing and phone-banking to “get people on those buses.”
For detailed information, click here.
have been made with the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police for buses to drop
passengers off on
will be stationed at
are needed to help greet the buses, set up, security and with a variety of
other tasks. There will be a “Volunteers Meeting” on Friday, October 15, 7 P.M.
at St. Stephen Church,
The Pre-Rally and entertainment will begin at 10:30 am.
Rally will begin at 12 noon at the Lincoln Memorial in
between 22nd and
Maps, housing information, and other helpful information are available here.
Actor Danny Glover; entertainer and activist Dick Gregory; Rev. Jesse Jackson; Brenda Stokely, President, AFSCME District Council 1707; Clarence Thomas, co-Chair MWM; Chris Silvera, Teamsters National Black Caucus; Ralph Schoenman, MWM Communications, Roger Toussaint, President, Transport Workers Union, Local 100; Donna Dewitt, President South Carolina State Federation of Labor; Mike Hoffman, Co-Founder, Iraqi Veterans Against the War; and more.
Discussion & Organizing Tents
event on Oct. 17 is of course the rally on the steps of the
But there’s more… Oct. 17 will not only be a big rally but also a genuine opportunity for activists from many different struggles, and many different parts of the country (and the world), to share information and ideas with each other, and talk about strategies to carry our movement forward.
In Order to facilitate this process, we will have Discussion & Organizing Tents near the Lincoln Memorial on Oct. 17.
The tents will be situated close enough to be accessible to all who come to the rally, but far enough away so as to not interfere or compete with it.
Each tent will be issue-based. A partial list of issues includes:
Workers’ Rights (i.e., organizing, contracts, health/safety issues)
Global Women’s issues/the “invisible worker”
Reparations (i.e., domestic/international)
National Health Care For All
The Corporate Agenda (i.e., free trade agreements, outsourcing, sweatshops)
International Solidarity (i.e., Haiti, Cuba, Venezuela, Iraq, Palestine, South Africa, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Colombia, The Philippines, Korea, etc.)
Repression, racism, violations of civil liberties, the “Patriot Act,” civil & human rights
Quality/Free Education for all
Criminal Injustice system/political prisoners
Environmental issues & environmental racism
MWM Solidarity with Hotel Workers March
are currently on strike or locked out in
Participants in the Million Worker March are invited to participate in a march from the rally to Hotel Washington, one of the hotels where workers may be on strike soon. The march will take place in the late afternoon, and it is optional for MWM participants, as many will want to remain at the main rally, or in the discussion and organizing tents.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Get the Word out!
1) download leaflets here and take them to your school, workplace, house of worship, union, and community organization.
2) Link to the Anti-war for the Million Worker March Website :
3) Forward this email to your email lists
We need help with the enormous expenses involved with organizing buses for this massive mobilization of working people. You can donate online here.
Workers Preparing To Rally On Mall
War, Jobs, Schools on List of Issues
by Manny Fernandez
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, October 14, 2004; Page B01
Thousands of workers from across the United States—bus drivers, postal clerks, educators, longshoremen, farm laborers—plan to converge Sunday [October 17] on Washington to rally for jobs, universal health care, and an end to the war in Iraq.
the Million Worker March said they want to draw attention to problems facing
and nonunion workers realize that they’re losing more and more every day,” said
Chris Silvera, 48, secretary-treasurer of Teamsters
Local 808 in
Though organizers said they expect tens of thousands, some pointed out that the “million” in the march title is intended to evoke the powerful imagery of the Million Man March in 1995, not to reflect a crowd count. Organizers estimated 100,000 on their permit application to the National Park Service.
Worker March is an expression of our intent to build a movement of that
magnitude,” said Ralph Schoenman of
the nation’s largest labor federation, which represents more than 13 million
workers, has not endorsed the event. It was the AFL-CIO that organized one of
the labor movement’s last major marches on
Silvera, with the Teamsters in
Teamsters National Black Caucus. “But you’ve got to understand that for every one I had there, the entire weight of the AFL was there to discourage 10 from coming.”
unions have endorsed the protest, but the idea for it came from a single local:
International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 10
“Workers need to have their own independent voice, their own political vision, because no one can speak for workers but workers,” said Thomas, a third-generation longshoreman.
Thomas and other organizers said much of the funding for the event comes from rank-and-file workers. One retired longshoreman from Local 10, Leo Robinson, has contributed more than $50,000, he said. “He is teaching us and showing us what it is going to take in the future to mount any kind of movement in the name of working people. We’re going to have to do it ourselves,” Thomas said.
Organizers have issued 22 demands, a broad array of grievances that go far beyond workers’ rights. Organizers call for universal health care, a national living wage, guaranteed pensions for all working people, and an end to the outsourcing of jobs overseas. They also are demanding a repeal of the Patriot Act, increased funding for public education, free mass transit in every city, a reduction of the military budget, and cancellation of what they consider pro-corporation pacts such as the North American Free Trade Agreement.
The diverse demands have struck a chord with an eclectic mix of left-leaning causes. Anti-globalization groups such as San Francisco-based Global Exchange and environmental activists such as the Rainforest Action Network are backing the demonstration. A group of anarchists has called for an anti-capitalist feeder march but is urging participants to avoid confrontational tactics.
A Web site
was created to help build antiwar turnout, and two of the major antiwar coalitions,
International ANSWER and United for Peace and Justice, which have sponsored some
of the biggest demonstrations against the
jobs, not for war’ is not just a slogan,” said Larry Holmes, 52, co-director of
the antiwar group
rally is scheduled to begin at noon at the Lincoln Memorial. Following a number
of speakers, including Martin Luther King III and Jesse Jackson, participants will
gather in tents to discuss issues. There will not be a mass march, but a
smaller solidarity march is planned to the Hotel Washington on