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8/18: Washington State Labor Council adopts a strong Immigrant Rights Resolution

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    National Immigrant Solidarity Network webpage: _http://www.ImmigrantSolidarity.org_ (http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/) e-mail:
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 1, 2007
      National Immigrant Solidarity Network
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      Washington State Labor Council adopts a strong Immigrant Rights

      On Saturday, August 18, 2007, delegates to the annual Washington State
      Labor Council Convention voted enthusiastically and overwhelmingly for a
      resolution that pledges to defend the rights of immigrants. The Council
      speaks for more than 500 local unions and over 400,000 rank-and-file
      workers in Washington State.

      The Resolution on Immigrant Rights denounces "guest worker" plans and
      the general atmosphere of racist scapegoating. In adopting it, the
      convention called on the Labor Council to take several concrete steps,
      including a commitment to "expand and initiate campaigns to organize
      immigrant workers into unions" to work for the "repeal of NAFTA, CAFTA"
      and "regressive immigrant legislation pending before Congress." It directs
      the Council to "call for an end to all ICE raids and deportations, including
      those based on Social Security no-match letters, and to work with
      immigrant rights groups to expose and stop ICE raids." It also directs the
      Council to forward a copy of the resolution to the national AFL-CIO with a
      request that labor halls provide a sanctuary for immigrant workers facing
      persecution from ICE.

      During discussion of the resolution, several delegates called for the
      Council to protest the accelerating raids by Immigration and Customs
      Enforcement (ICE) agents on worksites and communities across the
      state. A delegate from the National Association of Letter Carriers went a
      step further and called for a shutdown of the Tacoma Detention Center, a
      privately-operated prison where undocumented workers are incarcerated.

      This important resolution was brought by the Office and Professional
      Employees International Union (OPEIU), Local 8 and accepted with
      additions from a resolution drafted by the WSLC Executive Board. The
      OPEIU resolution was based on one written and disseminated by
      Organized Workers for Labor Solidarity, (OWLS), a multi-union caucus
      of rank-and-file labor activists in the Seattle area.  Send messages
      to OWLS via LindaAverill@....

      Unionists nationwide can modify the resolution as needed for their own
      locals and labor councils. The full text is at

      I believe the Council’s decision comes at a critical hour in the movement
      to defend undocumented workers. On the same day that delegates voted
      to act, members of the John Birch Society and the Minutemen marched
      in Seattle, calling for increased ICE raids and military-style border
      barricades. They carried huge signs that portrayed immigrants as child
      molesters and rapists. Fortunately, the anti-union racists were met by a
      spirited counter-protest of community groups and union delegates who
      came directly from the WSLC Convention.

      by Steve Hoffman, stevhoff@...

      Delegate to the WSLC Convention from Washington Federation of State
      Employees (WFSE) Local 304

      Link to the Article: http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/cgi-bin/datacgi/database.cgi?file=Issues&report=SingleArticle&ArticleID=0949

      National Immigrant Solidarity Network
      No Immigrant Bashing! Support Immigrant Rights!

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