[The San Francisco Labor Council recently passed a resolution in support of the March 16 National March on Washington, as has the SEIU International Lavender Caucus. In solidarity with these efforts, the following letter has been circulated among anti-war labor unionists nationwide.]
We the undersigned union members, officers and unions believe that President Trump’s support of the current coup in Venezuela is not in the interests of any worker, either in the United States or Venezuela. Donald Trump and his administration do not care about the workers of Venezuela, their suffering or their human rights any more than they care about workers here in the United States, or for that matter, anywhere.
Suffocating U.S.-imposed economic sanctions have caused great suffering among working people in Venezuela. This global economic strangulation of workers there is just an extension of the austerity and union-busting we have come to expect in our communities from Washington. We and our unions have nothing to gain by supporting this coup and contributing to the suffering of the Venezuelan people.
We are proud of our labor movement, but let us not repeat the bloody history of our recent past. In 1973 our AFL-CIO top leadership helped topple the democratically elected president of Chile, Salvador Allende; in the 1980’s helped fund the contras in Nicaragua and undermined unions in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras and in 2002 supported an earlier, failed attempted coup in Venezuela.
The Trump administration has assembled a team of notorious warmongers to lead the regime change effort against Venezuela. John Bolton, the principle architect of the "troika of tyranny" offensive against progressive Latin American governments including Venezuela's, also played a key role in the invasion and destruction of Iraq that took the lives of over a million Iraqis and thousands of U.S. service members. To lay the foundation for an outright war, the U.S. government is ramping up sanctions aimed at making life unbearable for ordinary Venezuelans.
On March 16, we can make a difference and demand an end to this campaign to carry out regime change in Venezuela that would eliminate the country's independence and impose neo-liberal policies that would devastate poor and working families.
All labor unionists unite and declare: no support for Trump's 2019 coup in Venezuela!
Signed [list in formation - use the form at bottom of page to sign]
- Gloria La Riva, Pacific Media Workers Guild CWA, 39521 First Vice-President (San Francisco, CA)
- Neal Sweeney, UAW, Local 5810 Vice President (Davis, CA)
- James Nelson, NEA, MNEA PEBU (St. Louis, MO)
- Carolfrances Likins, NEA-AFT, UTLA (LA, CA)
- Iris Edinger, UTLA, Retired Historian (Woodland Hills, CA)
- Daniel Kermit Leibensperger, UFCW, Local 1994 Steward (Sykesville, Maryland)
- Meg Brizzolara, SEIU 1021, Steward (Novato, Ca)
- Keith Brooks, UFT NWU, Local 1, NWU/ UAW LOCAL 1981 (Brooklyn, NY)
- Jonathan Boyne, Teamsters, Local 996 (Honolulu, HI)
- Tahnee Sweeney, California Teachers Association, Woodland Education Association Site Representative, Ramón S. Tafoya Elementary (Woodland, CA)
- Michael Scheinberg, AFT, United Adjuncts of NJ, Local 2222 AFT rank-and-filer (Collingswood, NJ)
- Edwin McCready, AFTRA-SAG, Hollywood (Los Angeles, California)
- Richard Ochs, Industrial Union of Marine and Shipbuilding Workers of America (IUMSWA), Local 24 Shop Steward of Welders and Burners, retired (Baltimore, MD)
- Lorenzo Canizares, National Education Association, Pennsylvania Education Association Retired (Labor Community Organizer) (Miami, Florida)
- Michele Sterling, CSEA , retiree unit (South Lake Tahoe, Ca)
- Mary Flanagan, California Teachers Association, United Teachers of Richmond Site Representative (Oakland, California)
- Julie du Bois, Office and Professional Employees International Union, Local 174 (West Hills, CA)
- Mario Santos, UNITE HERE!, Local 2 Field Representative (San Francisco, CA)
- Jose Enriquez, United Brotherhood of Carpenters, Local 1319 Head of the Young Guns Committee (Albuquerque, New Mexico)
- Mark Stansbery, Communications Workers of America, CWA 4502 Board Member (Columbus, Ohio)
- Jim Loveland, Freelancers, (Gulfport, Florida)
- Linda Helland, Linda Helland, 1000 (Ukiah, CA)
- Anthony Cantu, Teamsters, Local 79 Steward/Organizer (Tampa, Florida)
- Lola Ruiz, IWW, Los Angeles GMB 650 Delegate (El Cajon, California)
- Owen Murphy, Local510 sign and Display IUPAT , Local510 Business representative (San Francisco , Ca.)