We are members of various unions in Southwest Washington. We are parents, we are workers, and we are citizens in our communities. The Southwest Washington Central Labor Council firmly stands together in unity with and for our black brothers, sisters, and siblings of the labor movement, and for ALL black lives in our communities and around the world.
We acknowledge that the outrage expressed at the murder of George Floyd represents centuries of systemic oppression, and that our silence in the face of injustice is complicity. We acknowledge that policing in the United States has deep roots in anti-Black racism, and we condemn any and all police brutality. We stand with the National AFL-CIO in calling for policing reforms. Police officers should be held accountable. Many police unions are independent guilds and have stood outside of the union council umbrella by choice. There are no IUPA locals affiliated with the Southwest Washington Central Labor Council or the Washington State Labor Council.
Unions have played and continue to play a key role in furthering equality and justice for all workers. Our collective bargaining agreements hold management accountable to just hiring, promotion, and compensation. Racial and economic justice are woven together inseparably, and strong unions help to combat racial injustice and promote our collective power.
We do acknowledge our history, and the fact that unions have been complicit in the past, at times fostering racism. We have been and are committed to change. Racism is an enemy of working people. Racism plays an injurious role in the daily lives of all rank and file workers. It undermines the collective power in the fight against police brutality, voter disenfranchisement, racism in hiring practices, disparities in health care, disparities in wages and the school- to- prison pipeline. “An injury to one is an injury to all”: we are on a journey toward becoming antiracists, and we are committed individually to calling each other into this work and holding one another accountable.
As members of the Southwest Washington Central Labor Council, we have taken an oath to vote in our national, state, and local elections. We try to elect those officials who have our same values and vision for a strong middle class. We work hard with our elected officials on labor and trade policies. Trying to promote working friendly legislation while fighting against those policies that have undermined workers’ rights and access to wealth which have disproportionately impacted Black workers, workers of color, and other marginalized groups.
We can all take action by using our voices at the ballot box to vote for leaders who will work for racial justice and promote union and labor values which raise the living standards for ALL working people.
We are all in this together.
Your Sisters, Brothers and Siblings of Labor
Affiliates of the Southwest Washington Central Labor Council
American Federation of Teachers/Oregon Federation of Nurses and Health Practitioners 5017A
Amalgamated Transit Union 757
Bakery, Confectionery tobacco, and Grain Millers (114, 364)
Battleground Education Association
Camas Education Association
Clark College Association of Higher Education
Columbia Pacific Building Trades
Columbia Newspaper Guild/CWA 37082
Communication Workers of America 7812
Electrical Workers (77,48,125)
Elevator Constructors 23
Evergreen Education Association
Fire Fighters (452,1805,4574)
International Association of Heat and frost Insulators 36
International Association Theatre and Stage Employees 28
Letter Carriers 1104
Machinists (63,1005,1885, W536)
Office and Professional Employees (8,11,277)
Operating Engineers 701
Painters and Allied Trades (10, 1236)
Professional and Technical Engineers 17
Screen Actors Guild - American Federation of Radio and Television Artists (Portland Local)
Sheetmetal Workers 16
State County and municipal employees (328, CN 28, RPE9)
United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters (26, 290)
Unite Here 8 (Hotel employees restaurant employees)
Vancouver Education Association
Washington Education Association - Riverside Uniserv Council
Washington Public Employees Association / UFCW Local 365
Washington State Nurses Association - PeaceHealth