As long as there is worker solidarity

Upcoming Events 📅

Tickets for EWOC’s first virtual fundraising event are now available! Ticket sales include special packages with limited edition “Unions Are Cool” t-shirts and baseball hats. All proceeds will go directly to providing support and training for non-union workers organizing their workplaces. The event will be held Sunday, June 13, at 7:00 p.m. ET. Buy your ticket today!

What is pre-majority unionism? What has been won, and what are the lessons learned from organizing in this way? Should unions embrace this strategy on a large scale? Join us Wednesday, May 26, at 8:00 p.m. ET for a conversation on pre-majority unionism! We’ll hear from union members and organizers from several pre-majority unions, including the recently established Alphabet Workers Union. Register for the event in advance here.

This past Tuesday, May 18, The Higher Arab Monitoring Committee declared a general strike in Israel and occupied Palestinian territories as an act of protest against both the horrific violence Palestinians have faced over the last week, and their continued occupation and oppression since the state of Israel was founded in 1948.

The scale of the strike has been incredible. It is believed that more than half the Arab population participated, from taxi drivers and cleaners, to doctors and high-tech workers. Construction and building sites in particular have been effectively paralyzed, with only 150 of the 65,000 Palestinian construction workers coming in to work, causing losses of nearly $40 million. Joint List Chairman Ayman Odeh has described the general strike as “an unprecedented act of unity, an organized and just civil struggle against the occupation and for peace and equality.”

The Palestinian struggle for freedom has a long and storied history of militant labor action. In 1834, Arab fellahin (peasants) launched a rebellion against the Egyptian governor’s taxation policies. Although the revolt was ultimately suppressed, it was a defining moment in the Palestinian sense of nationhood. 100 years later in 1936, while under British Mandatory rule, Palestinian workers engaged in a general strike that lasted half a year. The strike was in protest of the growing Zionist movement within Palestine, and laid the groundwork for future acts of Palestinian resistance.

Throughout their history, Palestinian workers have recognized the power they hold. In the face of brutal oppression and incredible odds, they have organized again and again to leverage their labor strength and resist their occupation. It is an important lesson for working class people everywhere. The powers of capital and empire can exploit, persecute, and even try to destroy us, but they still need our labor to survive. And no matter how hopeless it may seem, as long as there is worker solidarity, there is always the power to fight back.

The World of Work 🌍

International: Across the globe, there has been an outpouring of support for Palestinians from workers and unions. The International Trade Union Confederation (IUTC), the world’s largest alliance of labor unions, has released a statement calling for an immediate end to the violence and for the injustice of Israeli occupation to be addressed. Sharah Burrow, the IUTC general secretary, says in the statement, “It is heartbreaking to see Palestinian families being thrown out of their homes to make way for Israeli settlers. Yet again, the unjust and illegal occupation of Palestinian lands, and the perpetuation of the occupation of Palestine by Israel, are the root cause.”

Italy: After discovering a shipment of weapons and explosives was destined for Israel, port workers in Livorno, Tuscany refused to load the arms, and organized protests urging the Italian government to suspend its military exports to Israel. L’Union Sindacale di Base (USB), the syndicate representing the workers, said in a statement that they will not be an accomplice to the massacre of the Palestinian people. Other Italian workers groups have also called for increased coordination between port workers to prevent future arms shipments, and protests in solidarity with Palestine have taken place in cities across the country.



Talk with an Organizer

An EWOC organizer is ready to help you and your co-workers get the benefits and respect you deserve.

Recent Posts