May Day is the international workers day. It should be a day of workers struggle against capitalism. Join with Class Struggle Workers – Portland and the Internationalist Group to demonstrate for a revolutionary, working-class answer to the bosses’ racist system of poverty and war.
The Class Struggle Contingent stands for:
Full Citizenship Rights for All Immigrants!
Mobilize Workers Power: Strike Against Deportations!
No to Democrats, Republicans, Working Families Party or Greens!
Defeat U.S. Imperialism! Drive U.S. Out of Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan!
For A Class-Struggle Workers Party, for a Workers Government!
I announce my candidacy for vice president of IATSE Local 28 with a sense of urgency and commitment. I do so at this moment when our Local, our Union, the labor movement in general and all working people are facing tough times. We need a fighting leadership, and I believe I can help build that.
For starters, I know the ropes. As most of our members know, I’ve been an active member of the Local including organizing IATSE contingents for May Day. I’ve served on committees and as a delegate to the Oregon AFL-CIO Convention in the past. I’ve attended labor law, organizing, and unionism workshops. I’ve served as a union steward and I’m well versed in Robert’s Rules of Order and our Constitution and Bylaws.
I believe our membership is our most valuable resource and we should organize ourselves accordingly. We should do away with secret negotiations and act with transparency and democracy. Our disciplinary policies should reflect our relationship to each other as sisters and brothers in this alliance.
Beyond that we need a strategy for labor that will fight to organize the unorganized and unite across craft, trade, and jurisdictional lines. I have advocated for and participated in our Local aiding organizing efforts as at Burgerville and elsewhere. We also need to lead the struggle against sexism, homophobia, racism, and anti-immigrant bigotry.
As a supporter of Class Struggle Workers – Portland, I have helped build labor solidarity against union-busting on the waterfront and labor contingents against racist police murder (May Day 2015), in defense of abortion rights (January 2016) and of “hard hats for gay rights” (June 2016), actions in which a number of our Local members proudly participated. Today it is urgent that we use our strength in defense of immigrants, Muslims and the rights of us all. Our rallying cry must be “An Injury to one is an Injury to All,” and we must make it real.
For decades our unions have been chained to the Democratic Party. Look where that has gotten us! Now a lot of union leaders want to make nice with Trump. That’s another ticket for defeat. A class-struggle strategy for our unions must rely on workers power, independent from the state, the political parties of the bosses, and not on the courts. The government of Taft-Hartley and union-busting “right to work” serves the bosses. It’s that simple. So we need our own party, a workers party, that can defend all those ground down by the power of capital.
We are facing hard times in the labor movement and at this pivotal moment we need a solid, class-conscious strategy to defend ourselves against the hailstorm of attacks coming our way. We have the power as workers not just to resist but to defeat these attacks, but we need to use that power or we will certainly lose it.
CSWP urges all defenders of the rights of working people and immigrants to participate in the “ICE Out of Woodburn” protest scheduled for Monday, March 20, 4:30 p.m. at 2883 Newberg Highway in Woodburn, OR. For more information visit the Facebook event page for the protest.
This article from the London Guardian gives a vivid description of the cruel terror inflicted by the ICE Gestapo on our fellow workers.
At the monthly membership meeting March 15, Painters and Drywall Finishers IUPAT Local 10 voted to establish an anti-racist mobilization committee, joining similar efforts in other local unions to prepare to put into practice the resolution to “Stop the KKK and All Racist Groups.” This comes in the context of increasing racist and fascist threats across the Northwest, including the arson of a mosque in Bellevue, WA in January to the appearance of fascist graffiti in Portland earlier this month.
We reprint below the statement of the newly-elected chairman of the Local 10 committee, a journeyman painter with many years in the industry.
Sisters and Brothers, we are bound by oath to oppose racism within our ranks wherever and whenever. Our Constitution states:
To unite into one labor organization all workers eligible for membership, regardless of religion, race, creed, color, national origin, age, gender, or sexual orientation
We also have an non-negotiable moral duty to extend this oath to our brothers and sisters outside our ranks. Not only is this a moral duty but also a clear opportunity to strengthen Union ranks and reverse the slow poisoning of our Institution. Racism past and present has driven a wedge between all workers which severally weakens the power of a united front (the basic fundamental factor in organized labor). It only serves to benefit those that profit from our labor and consolidate the corrupt power of corporate America. We must grab this opportunity presented to us by the current political climate of heightened racism and put all our institutional support behind the anti-racist movement. Both the labor and anti-racist struggle are inextricably intertwined. None should take priority. We as Union will reap huge benefit from fighting and finally eradicating racism. I will go as far to say that our very survival depends on it.
In light of this urgency, I here by purpose that we form our own Anti-Racist Mobilization committee. A committee that will stand shoulder to shoulder with other Anti-Fascist Committees formed by our brothers and sisters of different trade unions. We will work to encourage fellow Unions to adopt the same principles and fight, we will reach out to all those organizations that have taken up this struggle in solidarity, we will mobilize to support those who are increasingly under attack by racist elements, and we will show by example that Union brothers and sisters have the moral fortitude to not shrink from an oath bound duty.
This update from Class Struggle Education Workers describes some of the efforts being made by class-struggle unionists to defend immigrants at NYC public schools and universities. It’s time for unions in the Portland area to take similar measures.
Class Struggle Workers – Portland participated in the “ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the deportation gestapo) Out of Oregon” protest on Monday. We were joined by a contingent from Painters & Drywall Finishers Local 10.
CSWP says it is urgent for the unions to take action now to defend immigrants from deportation. The Trump regime is hated and unstable, but the bipartisan attack on immigrants won’t be ended by appeals to the Democratic Party or liberal platitudes about allegedly American values (this country was founded on slavery and genocide, not democracy, love and rainbows). The multi-racial, multinational working class has the power to drive the ICE gestapo out of Portland and other cities with mass protests backed by strike action.