Weekly Update: When We Fight, We Win

Dear friends and allies,

When we fight, we win! That is what we learned when the Trump administration rescinded its blatant attack on international students who were being forced to choose between risking their health by attending in-person classes or risk being deported to their countries of origin, where they may be unable to continue their education. At Community Labor United, we are proud of our partners who saw this fight to its conclusion, ensuring the safety of our international students and setting an example for the kind of nation we want to be. We applaud Attorney General Maura Healey for taking swift legal action when the plan was announced and consequently standing with the international student community to course correct. 

A key solution to our recovery from COVID-19 pandemic is an affordable transit system for all communities. This week, the Senate approved a bond bill that orders the state Department of Transportation to make low-income fares a reality by 2022. While this isn’t the victory we’d hoped for, it is a step in the right direction. 

These are excellent starting points for all of our upcoming fights — especially the ones related to housing, equitable access and education that will help our communities recover fairly from this pandemic. Below are a few ways you can participate in our fights to bring about positive change. 

You can help us continue the fight by sharing our Facebook posts and by following and retweeting us on Twitter. You can also receive regular updates from CLU by registering on our website

A Just Recovery from the COVID-19 Pandemic

Op-ed: Public transportation workers always play vital roles

Public transit is a public good. And while our public transit systems have been sapped dry by austerity budgeting at the state and federal levels, workers within the state’s beleaguered transportation authorities have continued to muscle through despite cut after cut after cut. At the MBTA, workers have endured one threat after another to their jobs, to their benefits, and to their livelihoods, mostly from folks who haven’t taken a bus or subway train in years.

As community leaders, we hope that because of the pandemic there will be a renewed level of appreciation for public transit workers. Public transit workers often face physical violence because of disturbed or agitated riders – and they have faced a cascade of economic violence from think tanks and others who, for years, have used the MBTA’s workforce as a political punching bag. Read the full op-ed here. 

Finding Child Care that Works for You and the Caregiver

Are you looking for child care that is both affordable and respects the rights of workers? Our toolkit is now available in Spanish and Portuguese. We have compiled the following resources for families who are looking for child care that also uplifts the caregivers in our communities. This also includes information for parents about returning to child care. Click here to view the toolkit in English

Take Action

Fight for Environmental Justice

For decades, our communities exposed to environmental burdens have suffered disproportionately from trash burning, highway expansion, and power plants. Today, inequality in Massachusetts continues to worsen. Our partners, GreenRoots and Neighbor to Neighbor have been doing tremendous work in fighting for environmental justice. They will be holding legislative briefing next week on these bills. Look out for more information on how to join on our social media channels. Meanwhile, write to your legislators today to urge them to support the Massachusetts Act Relative to Environmental Justice in the Commonwealth, comprised of H.4264, S.464, and S.453

Call or email House and Senate leadership, as well as House and Senate Ways and Means Chairs, and tell them you support these bills. 

Invest in Our Recovery! Join Raise Up Massachusetts for a regional launch

To fight COVID-19, relieve the economic damage it is causing for workers, families, and businesses, and tackle racial inequalities, we need a government response that rises to the needs of our communities, which are greater than ever. The Invest in Our Recovery campaign, led by the Raise Up Massachusetts coalition, is launching this call to action all across the commonwealth to demand an investment into our recovery and the systems that support it. Join Raise Up Massachusetts at one of the following launch events:

Thank you for reading and have a safe weekend!

In Solidarity

Community Labor United

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