May 1, 2020 in Solidarity with Workers on May Day

Today marks historic May Day, also known as International Workers Day, that commemorates the struggles of workers and immigrants across the world. North America Director Tamara Toles O’Laughlin issued the following statement in solidarity with the many essential workers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic:

Protect Workers

Artwork: Jan Berger of Paperhand Puppet Intervention

“Today and everyday, we are in solidarity with the workers of the world. In the midst of the global pandemic, we stand firmly with frontline workers putting their lives on the line for our survival and paving the way for a just recovery. At a time when our government should be doing everything possible to guarantee safe living and working conditions, Trump and his allies in Congress have bent over backwards to bailout wealthy corporations over people. We cannot let this happen on our watch.

“The global pandemic has demonstrated just how many workers it takes to hold up the economy, our shared culture, and our future. It takes all of us. From undocumented farm workers working through the crisis to keep us fed, while facing unjust threats of deportation, to people of color hit disproportionately by the broken systems that create unnecessary exposure to the virus, COVID-19 underscores long-standing inequities and exposes the harsh conditions experienced by so many essential workers across the United States. This May Day, we recognize the most vulnerable workers – strawberry pickers, transit employees, grocery clerks, postal workers, and employees of Amazon, Whole Foods, Instacart, Walmart and more who are fighting for basic protections. And we stand in solidarity with those who cannot work because their industries have been shuttered by protective stay at home orders. To each and every human, we express gratitude and acknowledge their contributions.

“In the fight for climate justice, workers and their communities must be centered in a transition to a renewable economy. That means our government must prioritize living wages, healthcare benefits, and a safe environment for every worker – we only need leaders who are willing to stand up for it.”