Robert Martinez Jr., International President of the 600,000-member International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), released the following statement mourning the loss of William Spriggs, AFL-CIO Chief Economist and former chair of the Howard University Economics Department:
“The IAM is deeply saddened by the passing of Bill Spriggs, the AFL-CIO’s chief economist. Bill was a brilliant economist and worked tirelessly for working people. He was a leading voice in the fight for economic and racial justice and a true champion of the labor movement.
“As both the former Economics Department Chair at Howard University and as Chief Economist for the AFL-CIO, he inspired his students and labor colleagues to advocate for working families across our nation.
“Bill was an expert on making the connection between labor economics and race economics. His research gave us the foundation to advocate for fair wages, safe working conditions, and respect and dignity in the workplace.
“The IAM is grateful for Bill’s contributions to the labor movement and the cause of economic justice. His legacy will live on in the work of the IAM and other unions fighting for a message that work connects us all.
“We offer our deepest condolences to Bill’s family, friends, and colleagues.”