Pacifica KPFA WorkWeek On Tuesday 2:30 PM PST
To Focus On UAW International Nullifying UAW 2865 Support For BDS
WW 12/29/15 The UAW And Zionism and Imperialism Trumps Democracy for Union Executives
WorkWeek this week will look at the recent decision of the UAW Executive Board to nullify a democratic vote of the UAW 2865 to support BDS or boycott, divestment and sanctions.
We also will hear from ILWU Local 10 member Clarence Thomas about what labor should do to stop the continued police murders in the Black community.
There is growing support around the world for the BDS movement. Unions in Europe including in Ireland and the UK to support actions against Israeli apartheid policies.
In the US most national unions support the Israeli government and also the Histadrut which represents the majority of unionized Israeli workers.
Last year after a long discussion and debate within the 20,000 member UC graduate students who are members of UAW 2865, the union voted to support BDS.
This was appealed by a supporter of Israel who is a PhD at UCLA.
The appeal to the international union executive board voted that it had indeed been a democratic vote but the action was an economic threat to companies that UAW members worked for and did business with Israel. These included Caterpillar, Boeing, General Dynamics, General Electric, ITT, Lockheed-Martin and Northrup-Gruman.
Workers at these companies are represented by the UAW and supporters of Israel’s position.
The appeal was also supported by other union leaderships including AFGE, the Jewish Labor Committee and the Teamsters California Council. The Teamsters also represent IBT Local 2010 at the UC campuses and in the bay area the Teamster Joint Council President Rome Aloise not only protested the BDS resolution by UAW 2865 but vehemently opposed the protests that stopped the Zim shipping line at the Port of Oakland and other ports on the West Coast arguing that it would cost jobs.
The BDS resolution did have broad support in the vote including many Jewish members of the union who submitted statements of support.
The International also charged that the support of the BDS would subvert the no strike clause of the UAW Constitution and subvert the collective bargaining of the union.
They then nullified the vote.
WorkWeek interviews Kurt Horner who is a steward of the UAW 2865 at UC Irvine and a supporter of the BDS caucus and Alborz Ghandehari who is the recording secretary of the Local and is a graduate student at UCSD.
Also interviewed is Jeff Blankfort a journalist, radio host and former editor of the Labor Bulletin on the Middle East. Blankfort has written extensively on the role of the AFL-CIO on Israel and Palestinians.
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