Speaker after speaker excoriated the County Council – controlled by Democrats in one of the most progressive counties in the nation – for considering anti-worker legislation that appeared to have been taken directly from the playbook of the American Legislative Exchange Council, funded by the notoriously anti-union Koch brothers.
UFCW 1994 president Gino Renne said the bill "will disrupt the labor peace we have worked so hard to achieve," while UFCW 400 president Mark Federici called it “shocking,” and AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre – a Montgomery County resident – said that “I shouldn’t have to be here; I should be fighting for workers rights in Right-to-Work states” like Kansas, where other witnesses said the bill had originated.
Fire fighter Brock Cline brought the packed room to its feet when he said that “My compatriots back here, my brothers in blue, those of us in red, and all the other employees of the county, we work hard. We have one simple mission, and that is to make the county a better place. Please do not hamstring us in our ability to continue to serve the citizens, and make a better life for ourselves and our children in Montgomery County.”
For the latest local labor calendar, go to dclabor.org and click on Calendar.
Here’s today's labor history:
On this date in 1917, some 50,000 lumberjacks struck for an 8-hour day.
In 1931, Ralph Gray, an African-American sharecropper and leader of the Share Croppers Union, was murdered in Camp Hill, Alabama.
And in 1959, a half-million steelworkers began what was to become a 116-day strike that shuttered nearly every steel mill in the country.
Today’s labor quote is by Franklin Delano Roosevelt
"True individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made."