IAM’s Babineaux Talks Labor at National Action Network Convention

IAM General Vice President Diane Babineaux speaks on a labor panel at the 2015 National Action Network Convention in New York, NY.

“The labor movement needs to stand together like never before to fight attacks on working Americans,” said IAM General Vice President Diane Babineaux at a panel on labor at the 2015 National Action Network Conference in New York, NY.

From left, IAM Grand Lodge Representative Jim Reid, IAM Legislative Director Hasan Solomon, IAM General Vice President Diane Babineaux, and IAM Collective Bargaining Dept. Coordinator Jim Price at the 2015 National Action Network Convention in New York, NY.

“We must stop letting the right wing set our agenda. We must stand together,” said Babineaux. “I’m going to keep on fighting. The labor movement and every working family in this country have to keep fighting too.”

Babineaux cited the proliferation of so-called “right-to-work” laws that drastically curtail the influence of labor unions by forcing them to represent workers who don’t pay their fair share of dues. She also noted code words used by the right to stoke racial tensions – for example, “states’ rights” has been used to justify segregation and voter suppression laws.

“When you see a hospital closing or a school closing, remember that we are in this together,” said Babineaux.

Babineaux was joined on the panel by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, AFSCME President Lee Saunders, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and American Federation of Government Employees President J. David Cox. The Panel was moderated by Clayola Brown, president of the A. Philip Randolph Institute, a constituency group of the AFL-CIO.