Sep 12, 2013
In honor of Labor Day, the Congressional Black Caucus devoted its Special Order Hour on Monday to talk about the importance of organized labor to African Americans and the nation as a whole.
Check out CWA's recap of the speeches featuring Reps. Donald Payne Jr. (NJ), Hakeem Jeffries (NY), Marc Veasey (TX), Joyce Beatty (OH) and G.K. Butterfield (NC).
"Labor unions played an important role in the civil rights movement," said Beatty. "Today the labor movement continues to be an important issue to African Americans – just as important as it was 50 years ago during the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom."
Members recalled their work with the labor movement and stories of family members who have been proud union workers. Jeffries talked about his time as a New York state legislator, supporting the "very courageous" Cablevision technicians in Brooklyn struggling to organize.
"They voted in the face of significant pressure to the contrary to join the union and to organize a chapter in order to fight for better wages, stronger health care and the possibility of a better retirement," he said.