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Labor Rise at End Fossil Fuels Demo

By Ted Franklin - Labor Rise, September 18, 2023

Labor Network for Sustainability contingent at Sacramento, California climate emergency demonstration. Credit: Ted Franklin CC-BY-NC-4.0

Labor Rise members helped organize a contingent of rank-and-file union members to join hundreds of other demonstrations in the End Fossil Fuels march and rally in Sacramento, California, on Sunday, September 17, 2023. We marched under the banner of Labor Network for Sustainability, a national organization building Labor/Climate movement solidarity. The Sacramento action was one of many in the United States during the international week of action to end fossil fuels. In New York City, where the United Nations gathered for meetings on climate, 75,000 people marched.

In Sacramento, where hundreds gathered, Labor Rise member Martha Hawthorne spoke on behalf of Labor Network for Sustainability:

At the big rally in New York City, Chris Silvera of Teamsters Local 808 took to the stage shortly after Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called on the Biden Administration to stop approving fossil fuel projects:

First of all, let me just say thank you to my IATSE brothers and sisters who are here. This is a union stage. We’re not like them other people. We’ve got to remember SAG and AFTRA and the UAW. Where’s my union brothers and sisters standing up? This is a workers’ fight. It is the poor, it is the working class that suffers with these fossil fuel devils. We have to move on.

And I’m going to tell you something: If you elected 300 more AOCs, if you elected a president that thought like AOC, if you elected a Senate — I’m not talking about Democrats and Republicans; I’m talking about servants of the people. And labor has to be in the vanguard of this struggle, because we have the resources, we have the organization, we have the power to join together with poor communities, with Indigenous communities to say “no” to any more pipelines, “no” because we can live without oil but we can’t live without water. We can live without oil, but we need clean air.

And we are here as labor to stand in solidarity with — let me do the count right quick — woo, look like about 75,000 people. We are here with you. Power belongs to the people. To the people belongs the power. When you go to the polls, don’t vote R, don’t vote D, vote for people like AOC. Power to you.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are not the official position of the IWW (or even the IWW’s EUC) and do not necessarily represent the views of anyone but the author.

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