Apr 30 2008

Celebrating International Workers Rights on May Day

Feature Stories | Published 30 Apr 2008, 9:41 am | Comments Off on Celebrating International Workers Rights on May Day -

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Eric DrookerGUESTS: Garrick Ruiz, core volunteer with Garment Workers Center, Shuming Cheer, Civil rights coordinator at South Asian Network, Taina Reyes, Director of the Santa Ana office of Hermandad Mexicana Latino Americana

Tomorrow is May Day and workers around the world and here in the US are marking the workers rights day with rallies, protests, and marches. In Thailand labor leaders are threatening a mass protest over the minimum wage; fifty thousand people are expected to march in Moscow at a rally organized by the Communist Party criticizing President-elect Dmitry Medvedev; Turkish trade unions are planning a rally Istanbul’s Taksim Square, an area where such gatherings have been banned for over 30 years; and fifty thousand Cuban youth are expected to participate in a mass march through Havana’s Revolution Square. In the past 3 years in the US, May Day has been commemorated as a day in honor of immigrant workers within the context of on-going anti-immigrant attacks and the national debate on immigration reform. This year, in the state of California, dockworkers of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union have decided to stop work for eight hours in all U.S. West Coast ports on May Day to call for an end to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Locally, the majority of immigrants rights groups are organizing two major rallies that will join together in downtown Los Angeles. One of the marches originates in MacArthur Park, the site of last year’s police crackdown on demonstrators and their families.

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