Teamsters Stand With Immigrants; Because Immigrant Rights are Worker Rights!

Ron Herrera
Feb 13, 2019 · 3 min read
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This week, immigrant workers from multiple Unions from across the U.S. traveled to our Nation’s Capital in Washington D.C. to participate in a Day of Action organized by Working Families United. Among the participants was our Local 396 Brother Jorge Mancia who traveled from Westminster California to Washington D.C. to fight for the rights of his fellow sanitation workers, many of whom are immigrants from across Central America, particularly, El Salvador and Guatemala.

Working Families United is a coalition of Labor Unions, including the Teamsters, which was organized to advocate for the rights of immigrant workers who are a vital part of the American Labor Movement and contribute greatly to the growth of our Nation’s economy.

Many of these brave men and women came to this Country with only the clothes on their backs often fleeing for their lives from their countries of origin seeking a better opportunity for themselves and their families. Instead of treating these men and women with the dignity and respect that they deserve, the current administration is attacking their ability to reside in the U.S. by threating to gut programs like Temporary Protective Status (TPS) and refusing to enact humane comprehensive immigration reform. Make no mistake about it, this is not just an attack on immigrants, it is an attack on all working people in the U.S.

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By pushing thousands of people into the shadows, the government is also making it harder for immigrants to stand up for their rights and organize a Union to have a voice on the job and in their communities. The same politicians that support the end of TPS also support a broad agenda that hurts working families including passing right to work laws, opposing minimum wage increases, and fighting against expanding protections for workers.

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In order to fight back against this hateful agenda, Teamsters across the country must stand united shoulder to shoulder with our immigrant brothers and sisters as they face challenging times. We must continue mobilizing in our workplaces to ensure that our voices are not silenced by employers who threaten to use ICE as a way to discourage Union organizing. We must push on our elected leaders in Congress to take action and demand that they create a permanent solution that provides a pathway to citizenship for all immigrants. This will not only strengthen our communities, but it will also strengthen our labor movement that should be inclusive of all people regardless of their background. When working people unite, there is nothing that can stop us.

Teamsters Local 396 represents UPS and Sanitation workers in Southern California. The Local Union also serves Members in other miscellaneous industries such as logistics, recycling and feed delivery services.

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