Could 1st March and rally in San Francisco highlights important employee and social justice necessities – CBS San Francisco
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) – A May 1 march in honor of union workers filled Market Street in San Francisco on Saturday morning, and while the focus was on work, other social issues were also highlighted.
“When I say union, you say fight!” shouted a man with a megaphone.
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Unlike Labor Day, which usually has afternoon picnics and speeches by politicians, May 1st is a day when workers can make their voices heard.
“I think for many of us it will always be a Workers Day that is different from Labor Day. This is really a holiday created by the government to honor workers, but different from us, our own Day for the workers, “said the marching man Fernando Marti.
There have been many demands, from immigration rights to prison reforms to racial justice, but the main one has been about workers demanding respect for their work – especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It does jobs that were invisible and visible – janitors, security guards, domestic workers, nursing home workers and the public are finally understanding,” said SEIU President Mary Kay Henry. “So basic workers need government and corporations to invest in these jobs and turn them into jobs that people can feed their families on.”
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After higher paid professionals left their offices, it was up to the so-called “essential workers” to keep the country going. Well, those who have been taken for granted in the past bear this title with pride.
“I hope it changes the thinking, the mentality, to say that we are not only essential because of the pandemic. We were important before, we are important through the pandemic and we will be important afterwards, ”said Joseph Bryant, President of SEIU Local 1021.
Trent Willis, head of ILWU Local 10, reminded her that workers had always been at the forefront of social concerns from the start when protesters arrived at the Civic Center Plaza for an afternoon rally, which featured signs with a myriad of causes .
“The labor movement started when blacks were brought here as slaves,” he told the crowd. “That was also the labor movement back then. And if you stand up for the labor movement, you stand against slavery, against systemic racism and above all against systemic oppression! “
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City officials estimate that more than a thousand people attended the march and rally on Saturday morning.