April 21 – Massachusetts Labor Defense | Center for Marxist Education, 550 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA | Sat April 21, 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Bill Okerman is the point person for the Wage Theft Initiative at the Needham Area Immigration Justice Task Force. He will present his work on wage theft in Massachusetts by presenting “Outrageous Conduct: How the Government of Massachusetts Gutted Enforcement of Its Wage and Hour Laws.”
Massachusetts Labor Defense, working together with the Committee for International Labor Defense (CILD), aims to bring together labor organizations statewide and worldwide to organize mass defense in cases important to the cause of workers and all oppressed. Our mission in Massachusetts at the moment is specifically focused on the coordination of a working class movement to put an end to wage theft and violations of other labor laws.
As we nurture this movement, we are seeking the active participation of local, national and international labor organizations, but in particular we welcome guidance and leadership and solidarity of the North Shore Labor Council, the Boston May Day Coalition, the Metrowest Worker Center, the Needham Area Immigration Justice Task Force and especially their Wage Theft Initiative. We are actively seeking to include other labor unions and workers' centers.
While our interim sights are set on putting an end to wage theft and improving the day-to-day conditions of workers, we have no confidence in the exploiters and their state, laws, courts, etc.; instead we look to build our confidence in workers and our organizations.
May 01 – International Workers Day | Rally on Boston Common, Parkman Bandstand | Tue May 01 at 5:00 p.m., followed by a 6:30 March to Copley Square
The government in Washington and the billionaire class are leading a generalized assault on our lives, rights, and living conditions. The wealth gap today continues to grow. From the racist attacks on Muslims, Migrants, and African-Americans to attacks on healthcare, women, and LGBT folks, and from attacks on our environment and education, to perpetual wars, working people are under fire.
The leading edge of this assault today is the stepped-up attacks against migrants. Deportations are accelerating. As US wars have created massive debt and refugees internationally, the consequences of corporate greed at home have created refugees within our own borders. The war on the poor continues. Student debt stands at over a trillion dollars! The recent tax cuts for the rich will be at the expense of our living standards. They will be going after affordable housing, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. Millions of youth and decent hard-working people are under attack!
Claiming that human caused climate change is a "hoax", the Trump Administration pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord. The falsehood of this claim was yet again demonstrated by the horrendous hurricanes that devastated the Gulf Coast and Caribbean. Enough is enough! An injury to one is an injury to all! Let us stand together and build a united, fighting movement. Please join us on May Day where our program will address: Migration, Labor Rights, Systemic Oppression, Threats to Human Survival, and the role of capitalism in the current crisis.
Anarchist Black Cross
Bay State Red Sentinels
Boston Education Justice Alliance
Boston Labor Solidarity Committee
Boston May Day Coalition
Boston Socialist Alternative
Boston Teachers Union
Food for Activists
Greater Boston Chapter: Green-Rainbow Party
Refuse Fascism, Metro Boston
Socialist Party - Greater Boston
Veterans For Peace - Boston, Smedley D. Butler Brigade
Other May 1st actions:
Everett - Main Rally 5:30pm Glendale Park
E. Boston - gather and march 4:00pm Liberty Plaza
Chelsea - gather and march 4:30pm City Hall
Worcester - 4:45- 6:30 PM, 145 Front Street
May 05 – May Day Learning & Action Program | IUE-CWA Local 201, 112 Exchange St., Lynn, MA | Sat May 5, 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
This presentation by Ben Sears is aimed at educating a new generation of labor organizers and workers in the successful methods used by the UE, as well as providing a venue for announcing the launch of Massachusetts Labor Defense's Wage Theft Campaign.
John Bennett Sears is a retired high school history teacher living in Philadelphia. During his 36-years teaching career, he wrote curriculum and was active in the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers. He continues as a board member of the PFT Retirees' Association. He has contributed articles to the People's Worldand Diplomatic History Magazine; and is the former editor of Political Affairs. He holds a PhD in history from Temple University. His dissertation was the basis for his book, "Generation of Resistance, The Electrical Unions and the Cold War". Ben will discuss his book with particular emphasis on the effect of the Cold War of the 1950s on UE Local 201 in Lynn.
Electrical workers and their unions were at the vortex of the arguments that shook the labor movement and the country during the Cold War. This book recounts and interprets that experience. While international issues were widely considered beyond the bailiwick of workers, they split the labor movement, impacted heavily on the electrical unions, and were the subject of passionate debate among workers.