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December 21, 2005

Omar Banmally at (718) 773-3100
Marsha Renwanz at (202) 225-1506


TWU Workers Designated As National Heroes For Working Families

Brooklyn, NY – December 21, 2005 - The public should be outraged at MTA boss Peter Kalikow for demanding blood and humiliation from the transit workers. Just hours before the strike deadline, under orders from his bosses, Governor George Pataki and Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Kalikow insisted on increasing the deduction from wages for pensions from two percent to six percent. The New York Times calculates that this petty action will save less than 20 million dollars over the next three years. After already having made substantial concessions Roger Toussaint rightfully interpreted this poison dart as an attempt to destroy TWU Local 100. This strike is a key battle in a long overdue war against labor unions and working families.

Against a nation-wide movement to paralyze unions and render them worthless in the eyes of the working families they represent, TWU Local 100 has launched a much-needed counterattack. All American working families should view the strikers who have shutdown mass transit in NYC as heroes.

TWU Local 100 refuses to yield to more of the give back extortion of the MTA bosses. Their rebellion inspires workers everywhere and must be supported by union leadership throughout the nation. The exorbitant, unconstitutional fines devised to break the union treasury and to bankrupt individual union members must be paid collectively by labor organizations all over the nation. Solidarity union support must reach beyond the City and the State and become a national alliance of massive resistance.

In Washington, the White House and the Department of Labor are continuing to lead a long-term war against unions. Every device possible is being utilized to harass and intimidate union leadership. Anti-working family policies continue to prevail with a denial of increases in the minimum wage; cutbacks in OSHA safety regulations; autocratic revisions of the Wage and Hour Act; a hostile Labor Relations Board; etc.

TWU Local 100 must be applauded for the courage to use their clout. All Americans who care about working families must march behind this army of Labor Liberators.



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