Monthly Archives: November 2011

Sign on: Open Call for Trade Union Solidarity with Palestinian Workers and Farmers Against Israel’s Apartheid Wall

Sign on below in support of Palestinian workers and farmers!

Labor for Palestine is circulating the following call from the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, and we urge labor activists in the US to show their support of Palestinian workers and farmers! Take the actions requested, and sign on below!

For the annual International Week against the Apartheid Wall to be held November 9-16, 2011, the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign urges the international trade union movement to stand with Palestinian workers and farmers in our struggle to defend our livelihoods and land. Once finished, the Apartheid Wall, together with settlements and closed military areas, will annex some 50% of the West Bank and siphon off most of its water resources. The Wall isolates Jerusalem and puts over 260,000 Palestinians at risk of expulsion, while standing in the way of workers and farmers reaching their workplaces and farms. It snakes its way deep inside the West Bank, devouring fertile land into Israeli controlled areas, encircling residential areas, ghettoizing and imprisoning the Palestinian population.

The Apartheid Wall has been deemed illegal by the International Court of Justice, yet the international community has done nothing to halt its encroachment on Palestinian land. Palestinian workers and farmers have been the most effected by the ongoing construction of the wall, thus we reach out to you to invoke the best practice of trade union solidarity under the tried and true union slogan of ‘an injury to one is an injury to all!’. We implore you in the spirit of the South African Anti-Apartheid struggle, where trade union solidarity was critical, to raise awareness within your unions and workplaces about the daily violations of Palestinian workers and farmers rights.

While the Israeli state argues that the construction of the wall is due to security reasons, the reality is that the Apartheid Wall cuts across Palestinian lands, separating the Palestinians into smaller segregated ghettos where workers movement is controlled though a permit system, which is reminiscent of the Pass Laws of the South African apartheid state. The Apartheid Wall has been especially harmful to Palestinian farmers and agricultural workers who are forced to obtain permits to work their own lands that lie behind the Wall or near settlements. Applicants who sufficiently satisfy the security considerations by proving a ‘connection to the land’, are even then only allowed on their land for limited periods during the harvest season, making the upkeep of farmland impossible.

We ask the trade union movement to stand in solidarity with Palestinian workers and farmers and to join us in this 9th International Week against the Apartheid Wall by taking any or all of the following actions:

• Distribute this factsheet to your membership,
• Place an interview with a Palestinian farmer in your public newsletters to give your membership a direct account from a Palestinian farmer,
• Expose corporations that are complicit in constructing the illegal Apartheid Wall and pass motions in your local branches and union conventions to divest from such companies, and
• Send a letter of solidarity from your union for us to publicize during the international week.

Please find our Factsheet on Palestine for Trade Unions here:

If you need any more information and to let us know about your action plans please

As trade unionists and labor activists in the United States and internationally, we express our strongest solidarity with our sisters and brothers, Palestinian workers and farmers, struggling against the Apartheid Wall. Our fellow workers in Palestine are under attack by the occupation – and the U.S. government and multinational corporations are complicit in those attacks. We pledge to act to support the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign in our unions, labor organizations, and workers’ centers.

Sign on here!

Peter Kuttner, Former Executive Board member, IATSE Local 600, Chicago, IL, USA
Sid Shniad, Research Director, Telecommunications Workers Union (ret.), COPE Local 378, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Les Field, AAUP, Albuquerque, NM, USA
Bryan Emmel, Teamsters, Moorhead, MN, USA
Shelia Cassidy, USW, Riverside, CA, USA
Rogers Turrentine, Lifetime Current Member, Writer Guild of America West, Oceanside, CA, USA
Jenny Heinz, 1199
John Dudley, SEIU, Branford, CT, USA
Michael Letwin, Former President, Assn. of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW Local 2325 Labor for Palestine; New York City Labor Against the War, Brooklyn, NY
Monadel Herzallah, Arab American Union Members Council, San Francisco, CA
Joe Iosbaker, Executive Board Member, Chief Steward, SEIU Local 73, Chicago, IL
Mary Scully, IUE-CWA 201 (Retired), McAllen, TX, USA
Jerry Silberman, Staff Representative, Pennsylvania Assoc. of Staff Nurses and Allied Prof. NNU, AFLCIO, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Tyler Shipley, CUPE 3903, Toronto, Canada
Stephen Cheng, Industrial Workers of the World/Brandworkers International, Valley Stream
David Laibman, PSC-CUNY (Ret), City University of New York, Brooklyn, NY , USA
Briam Semmens, UK TGWU
Kevin O’Donnell, Building Engineer, Teamsters Local 810, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Joseph Agonito, AFT, Syracuse, NY, USA
Wren Osborn, United Steel Workers, El Cajon, CA US
Laura Jordan, UCU, Manchester, UK
Amy Hines, AEU, Concord, CA
Glenn Shelton, Jobs with Justice, Detroit
B. Ross Ashley, SEIU Local 1 Canada, Toronto, ON, CA
Evert Hoogers, National Union Rep (retired), Canadian Union of Postal Workers, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Michael Martin, United Steel Workers, Portage, Michigan, USA
Ron Strand, HSA, Vancouver, Canada
Janet Hudgins, CUPE (retired), Canada
Peter Rachleff, United Association of Labor Educators/CWA, Saint Paul, Minnesota, US
Dr. Evalyn Segal, Past President, American Federation of Teachers, SDSU local, Walnut Creek, CA, USA
Theresa Peters, NUT, United Kingdom
Wendy Thompson, UAW L. 22, Detroit, MI, USA
Susan Stout, CAW, North Vancouver, BC, Canada
Jim McMahan, Teamsters 174(ret’d), Seattle, WA
Frank Couget, Shop Steward, National Association of Letter Carriers -Branch 36, AFL-CIO, Western Queens, NY, USA
Bill Bateman, Coordinator, RI Unemployed Council, Providence, RI
Nagesh Rao, AFT 2364, Highland Park, New Jersey, USA
Sherna Berger Gluck, former V-P California Faculty Assn/SEIU 1983, CFA/SEIU 1983, Long Beach, CA, USA
Rick Sullivan, BC Retired Teachers’ Assn, Parksville, BC, Canada
Mary Izett, Rockin’ Solidarity Labor History Chorus, Lafayette
Suzanne Adely, organizer, UAW, Yonkers, NY
Hari Subramanian, labor activist, Los Angeles, CA
Hetty Verlinde, Educator, the Netherlands
Jean Rands, Teachers’ Federation Employees Union, New Westminster, BC, Canada
Marcy Newman, Teacher, Lebanon