WORKSAFE STANDS IN SOLIDARITY WITH OCCUPY OAKLAND
October 28, 2011
Tuesday’s heavy-handed eviction of the Occupy Oakland encampment, and the violence directed at protestors in the hours that followed, has shocked our region, the nation, and the world. Dozens of cities in the U.S. and abroad are holding marches in solidarity with Oakland and vigils for Scott Olsen, the young marine who survived two tours in Iraq only to return home to be critically injured by the police while exercising his First Amendment rights in Oakland.
Worksafe joins with so many others in expressing this solidarity, both with the activists in the streets and the 99% of Americans they represent – those struggling to get by in this bruising economy, who want good, safe jobs at decent wages to provide for themselves and their loved ones, who demand a voice in their workplace and to receive the protections they deserve.
March 25th of this year marked the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Factory Fire, in which 146 people – overwhelmingly young immigrant women and girls – perished. Then, as now, forces aligned with the top tiers of the economic system – “the 1%,” in the language of the Occupy Movements – decried any regulations, even the most commonsense protections, claiming they would hinder the ability of businesses to succeed. Then, as now, workers and their allies knew this was false, and resisted. The Triangle Fire birthed the modern labor movement in the U.S.
It remains to be seen where the vibrant Occupy Movements will lead. It is clear, however, that business-as-usual is not providing for the vast majority of workers, particularly for vulnerable, marginalized populations such as low-wage and immigrant workers. Further, as demonstrated by the hundreds of California workers who die on the job annually and the thousands more who are injured or suffer from chronic exposure to chemical, biological, or physical agents, it’s just as clear that workplace safety and health protections remain as vital as ever.
With these and other workers in mind, Worksafe stands in solidarity with Occupy Oakland and all those demanding a just and equitable economy for the 99%. www.worksafe.org.