Union support growing for Aug 26 MLK anniversary ‘March on Washington’

Union support for the Aug 26, 2023, MLK 60th anniversary “March on Washington” is growing. Billed as “Not a commemoration, a continuation,” the event is seeing enthusiasm grow within the ranks of organized labor.

With the addition of the National Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), the American Postal Workers Union (APWU), and the United Federation of Teachers (UFT), the list of endorses now has a significant union presence.

They join a labor contingent that already includes the AFL-CIO, the American Federation of Government Employees, AFSCME, American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association, the Asian-Pacific-American Labor Alliance, and SEIU.

The march’s demands center on the expansion of voting rights. The strength of the original 1963 March on Washington was built on a coalition of churches, unions, civil rights organizations, and individual activists from around the country.

As originally reported in People’s World on Aug. 1, this month marks 60 years since the Aug. 28, 1963, “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom,” where Rev. Martin Luther King gave famous his “I Have a Dream” speech.

By the time of that march, much had been won through the mass struggles that began in the 1940s with the labor-led “March on Washington Movement” organized by A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rusting, but the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and ’60sexpanded the demands even further, culminating in the 1963 MLK-led march.

Many of those wins are being reversed today by an anti-people Supreme Court and statehouses under right-wing Republican control.

This year’s march is being convened by Rev. Al Sharpton, founder and president of the National Action Network; Martin Luther King, III, Board Chairman of the Drum Major Institute; and Arndrea Waters King, chairman and president of Drum Major Institute.

Support for the march is growing as the event day approaches. March organizers are projecting 50,000 attendees.

See the full list of endorsers and find out more information about the march.

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Eric Brooks
Eric Brooks

Eric Brooks is Co-convener of the African-American Equality Commission, CPUSA. He is organizing for an anti-racist society that puts the needs of working families over those of the rich.