Union members plan to protest SB 1070

More than 550 union members from 32 different unions in Los Angeles, along with several leaders from Los Angeles's community and faith organizations, will travel to Phoenix on July 29. They will travel "without papers" or identification the day SB 1070, Arizona's anti-immigrant law, is scheduled to go into effect.The buses will be filled with L.A. letter carriers, teachers, city and county employees, truck drivers, stagehands, carwash workers, construction employees, nurses, homecare workers, hotel workers, grocery workers and steelworkers, among others. Among the 550 participants who oppose SB 1070 are immigrants and non-immigrants, U.S. born and foreign born, African Americans, Asians, Latinos and Anglos. All of the buses bound for Phoenix will be drive by local shop stewards of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1700. "No one will be able to tell from looking at us who is illegal and who is not," said Matt Kozlo, a letter carrier from San Dimas and U.S. veteran who will ride the bus on July 29. "Whether we are white, black, Asian or Hispanic, we all came here at some point from somewhere else. Our immigration does need to be fixed, but not the way Arizona is doing it." L.A. labor's goal is not only to oppose SB 1070, but participate in activities in Phoenix where they will pledge to support efforts to register and turn out Arizona's Latino vote. They will also kick off a new campaign joining Los Angeles and Arizona working families around issues of workers' rights, good jobs and sensible solutions for national immigration reform. "We faced the same racial profiling law masquerading as immigration reform back in 1994 with Pete Wilson and Prop. 187," said Maria Elena Durazo, executive secretary-treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO. "It sparked major political change in California for the Latino community and workers issues. We want to support the Latino families of Arizona in defeating SB 1070 and the anti-worker agenda behind it." Contributed by the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO.

********** Published: July 22, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 14