On August 25th, DCNA leaders and staff gathered for an organizing training class. Of particular interest was the presentation from Nela Hadzic at the North East Nurses Association, who described how organizing campaigns in Pennsylvania over the past 18 months have increased membership in the Pennsylvania Nurses Association to 8,000.
DCNA Executive Director Ed Smith reports that “Attendees at the training committed to serve on an organizing committee with the goal to increase organizing at our own hospitals and institutions and to unionize nurses in the DC area.”
Then, on August 31st, DC nurses donated $500 to the Montgomery Housing Project to assist families affected by the gas explosion in the Flower Branch apartments.
On today's labor calendar, airport workers with SEIU Local 32BJ will rally and march to demand a living wage, starting at 3:30pm in the Terminal A lobby at National Airport.
For all the latest local labor calendar listings, go to dclabor.org and click on Calendar.
Here’s today's labor history:
On this date in 1929, textile mill striker and songwriter Ella May Wiggins, a 29-year-old mother of five, was killed during the Loray Mill Strike in Gastonia, North Carolina, shot to death by local vigilantes.
In 1933, a striker was shot by a bog owner -- who was also a town-elected official -- during a walkout by some 1,500 cranberry pickers, members of the newly-formed Cape Cod Cranberry Pickers Union Local 1. State police were called, more strikers were shot and 64 were arrested. The strike was lost.
And in 1959, Congress passed the Landrum-Griffin Act. The law expanded many of the anti-labor provisions of the Taft-Hartley Act, increasing union reporting requirements and restricting secondary boycotting and picketing.
Today’s labor quote is by Ella May Wiggins, testifying in Washington about labor practices in the South:
"I’m the mother of nine. Four died with the whooping cough, all at once. I was working nights, I asked the super to put me on days, so’s I could tend ‘em when they had their bad spells. But he wouldn’t. I don’t know why. ... So I had to quit, and then there wasn’t no money for medicine, and they just died."