Why Union Members Support the March for Climate, Jobs, and Justice
Union leaders spoke out about why their members were engaging in the March for Climate, Jobs, and Justice on April 29 in Washington, D.C. and in sister events in cities around the country.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 26, 2017) – Union members from around the country will be taking part in the March for Climate, Jobs, and Justice in Washington, D.C. on President Trump’s 100th day in office, April 29, and in solidarity marches and events in other towns and cities.Ahead of the events, labor leaders spoke out on why their members will be marching:
“Every day SEIU members and our communities experience the impact of toxic pollution in our air and water and the catastrophic impacts from climate change that are made worse from this pollution. We march because we are on the frontlines. As working people, people of color and immigrants, we march because our families are disproportionately hardest hit by pollution and climate change’s impacts. We march because as service and care workers we are on the frontlines of caring for and responding to impacted families and communities. We march because it’s time to hold corporate polluters who wreak havoc on our communities accountable to us. We march because it is time to hold self-interested politicians who rig the rules to put corporate polluters before working people accountable. We march because our families, our health, and our future depend on it.” – Mary Kay Henry, International President, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
“We can have good, sustainable jobs that support working families and communities and effectively take on our climate crisis. In fact, we must do both. We must increase economic opportunity, protect and improve public health and address, not ignore, the problems being caused by climate change. CWA members are committed to this fight.” – Chris Shelton, President, Communications Workers of America (CWA)
“As biologists, environmental planners, vehicle emissions testers and more, AFSCME members are on the front lines of creating solutions to the climate crisis. We are marching because we know that good jobs and sustainable, broadly shared economic growth can’t come at the expense of the planet we all share. Social and economic justice depends on bold action to address climate change.” – Lee Saunders, President, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
“The work of our 199,000 members every day in transit systems across North America is helping to reduce the pollution that is driving climate change. Riding public transit is one the best and easiest ways to reduce pollution. The Amalgamated Transit Union is calling for electrification of transit buses and rail to ensure zero emissions on public transit. The ATU has been at the forefront in the fight against climate change and we strongly support the March for Climate, Jobs, and Justice to show world leaders that transit workers care deeply about this vital issue.” – Larry Hanley, International President, Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU)
“AFGE stands firmly behind the hard-working men and women of the Environmental Protection Agency, and will fight to keep America’s environment clean and safe for all of us. The working people who make sure that you have clean air to breathe and safe water to drink have no political agenda. They simply want to do their jobs and follow their agency’s mission. We will always support them and work to ensure they can continue to protect community health for years to come.” – J. David Cox Sr., National President, American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE)
“I am a proud to be a federal working person, and I personally believe our government was designed to serve the American people—and the Environmental Protection Agency does just that. My fellow AFGE members, all public servants, believe that we are here to help serve citizens of this great nation. We want your children, and their children, and their children’s future children to have an environment free of pollutants, and that comes from the work we do. It’s my personal belief, having been both a veteran and federal employee, that I know what it means to serve the American public, and hope to do so for years to come at the EPA.” – Nate James, President, AFGE Local 3331, the largest bargaining unit at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
“The solidarity that exists between all of us is the key to having a strong, fair economy and a clean, safe environment. We can tackle climate change in a way that will ensure all Americans have the opportunity to prosper with quality jobs and live in neighborhoods where they can breathe their air and drink their water. Together we will build a clean economy that leaves no one behind.” – Kim Glas, Executive Director, BlueGreen Alliance.
For more information on the April 29 Peoples Climate Mobilization, visit peoplesclimate.org.