Workers To Rally in Washington, D.C., for Universal Health Coverage, Other Demands
Thousands of workers from across the nation on Sunday will rally for universal health coverage "from cradle to grave," in addition to 21 other demands, at the Million Worker March in Washington, D.C., the Washington Post reports. The march, initiated by International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 10 in San Francisco, will respond to alleged attacks on working families from corporations, the Bush administration and Congress, according to Clarence Thomas, co-chair of the national march committee and a crane operator.
"Workers need to have their own independent voice, their own political vision because no one can speak for workers but workers," Thomas said. Labor unions that support the march represent more than 3.5 million workers, event organizers said.
Chris Silvera of Teamsters Local 808 in Long Island City, N.Y., said, "Both union and nonunion workers realize that they're losing more and more every day," adding that neither President Bush nor Democratic presidential nominee Sen. John Kerry (Mass.) is "really addressing the issues of the working class."
The AFL-CIO, the largest U.S. labor union with more than 13 million members, has not endorsed the march -- a move that Silvera said could affect participation in the event. March organizers have estimated that about 100,000 workers might participate (Fernandez, Washington Post, 10/14).