IAM Midwest Territory GVP Phil Gruber, along with a delegation of IAM members, joined others in Madison, WI, to protest Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s legislation to strip public-sector workers of their collective bargaining rights.
As reported by Workers Independent News, Gruber told the crowd gathered for the city’s fifth weekend of protests that the Machinists are ready to stand side-by-side with public sector workers and take this fight head on. “If the Republicans want to wage a war against us, by God, we’re ready for it. Bring it on!” shouted Gruber.
Gruber warned that once rights are diminished for public-sector workers, there is no doubt GOP leaders will come for the private sector next. “If Walker is allowed to crush collective bargaining for the public employees of Wisconsin,” said Gruber, “it will only be a matter of time before the private sector employees are attacked, and the dominoes will begin to fall.
“As the story of labor unions is written, we have now reached the chapter where labor unions are under full attack. Thanks to the Republicans and the Tea Party, we are now fighting for our survival.
“Now is not the time to get mad, but a time to get organized. In every state where the maidens of the wealthy are trying to strip our collective bargaining rights, we will mobilize for recalls, ballot initiatives and political campaigns. IAM members have watched the wealthy destroy their jobs and their communities with unbridled greed. The Fighting Machinists have been aching for this fight.”
To watch GVP Gruber’s entire speech, click here.
People all across America are rising up in support of the workers in Wisconsin and those under attack in Ohio, Indiana and dozens of other states. Take action by joining unions, people of faith, civil and human rights activists, students and other progressive allies on April 4th for “We Are One.” It’s a day to show our solidarity. There will be a range of community- and workplace-focused actions. Click here for more information.