IAM Celebrates Native American Heritage Month

November is recognized as Native American Heritage Month, a time to honor the rich history, culture, and traditions of Native Americans and their contributions to our communities, country, and the labor movement.

The history of unions and the IAM would only be complete by acknowledging the invaluable contributions of Indigenous members, both past and present.

The IAM encourages members to learn about Indigenous communities, educate others, and work as allies to eliminate racism and inequity.

“In celebration of Native American Heritage Month, let us remember that in order to learn from history and move forward, we need to commit to engaging, listening to, and learning from our Indigenous members, their families, and their communities,” said IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr.

Native Women’s Equal Pay Day, which falls on Thursday, Nov. 30, is a significant reminder of the pay gap between different groups in the workforce. It marks the point in time when Native American women’s earnings catch up to what white men earned by the end of the previous year. 

Unfortunately, it takes approximately 18 months for Native American women to earn what white men earn in just 12 months. 

Women belonging to Native American communities earn about 55 cents for every dollar earned by white men. This pay gap is a significant contributor to poverty, high unemployment rates, and other challenges faced by Indigenous women.

If you are an IAM member and want to get involved in Native American issues, you can reach out to Julie Frietchen at 301-967-4747 or jfrietchen@iamaw.org.

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