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How Do We Fix Division in Our Movement?

As the title would suggest, How Do We Fix Division in Our Movement? Brothers and Sisters, I am not sure what the answer to that question is. However, I believe the most prominent divider is social issues, whether they are race, religion, guns, abortion, same-sex relationships, or gender equality. I find it hard to fathom why these issues divide us especially when our countries were founded as democracies for all people. For instance, the U.S. Declaration of Independence states, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men (women) are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.” 

Which raises the question, who stands to gain the most from these divisive tactics? 

While there may be many, and for various reasons, I am only concerned about a discussion of the ones who do it to oppress working families and the poor. 

I am proud to say that I am a Union Activist and a proud ATU member. A Union that fights against corporate greed, unequal treatment in the workplace and fair wages and benefits for our members and all workers and their families.

Union members, the working poor, and oppressed people need to join to fight back against economic injustice, corporate greed, and austerity, and for the right of everyone to the pursuit of happiness. 

As more workers today see the value of joining and being a member of a Union, we should be more steadfast and determined to support and continue this fight against elitism and corporate greed. CEO’s salaries have increased 1,322.2% from 1978 to 2020 (adjusting for inflation), while compensation for a typical worker has only increased by just 18%. We have a housing problem that I contribute to the lack of rising wages, leading to a record amount of homelessness.

What can we do to fix these issues? 

Increase the wages in a manner sufficient for all working people to realize their dream of a better life. This can be accomplished by restoring good-paying jobs back to our countries, improving education, and advanced training to develop workers’ skills. In fact, our Union is leading the way in the transit industry. We are standing united and waging campaigns to fight for better wages and benefits for our members. In fact, our members at Local 689-Washington, DC, working for the DC Circulator went on strike over poor pay, benefits, and other issues in early May. I had the honor of walking the picket line with International President John Costa. Our members’ unity and solidarity paid off, as they won a strong contract.  

So when people ask me “How do we fix division in our movement” I tell them, join a Union and elect people who share the same ideas about economic justice for workers and not economic inequality for a few!