On today’s labor calendar:
The AFL-CIO's Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Civil and Human Rights Conference kicks off this morning at 8:30am at the Washington Hilton; I hope you’ve already registered, because the conference is completely full, but even if not, you can join attendees as they visit the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial at the Tidal Basin at 9:30.
And at 9am tune in to the ARISE radio show here on WPFW where Metro Washington Council president Jos Williams will chat with guest host Gwen McKinney about rights, justice and the unwavering resolve to make the King legacy real.
Here’s today’s labor history:
On this date in 1929, Martin Luther King Jr. was born. Dr. King was every bit as committed to economic justice as he was to ending racial segregation. He fought throughout his life to connect the labor and civil rights movements, seeing them as twin pillars for social reform. King's spoke out movingly on labor rights and economic justice, underscoring his relevance today as a human rights leader whose commitment to unions and an end to poverty was a crucial part of his civil rights agenda.
Today’s labor quote is by Martin Luther King, speaking about right-to-work laws in 1961:
“In our glorious fight for civil rights, we must guard against being fooled by false slogans, such as ‘right to work.’ It is a law to rob us of our civil rights and job rights. Its purpose is to destroy labor unions and the freedom of collective bargaining by which unions have improved wages and working conditions of everyone…
Wherever these laws have been passed, wages are lower, job opportunities are fewer and there are no civil rights. We do not intend to let them do this to us. We demand this fraud be stopped. Our weapon is our vote.”