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Working People

Apr 18, 2024

On March 23, 2024, a coalition of around 80 people convened at the East Palestine Country Club at the first gathering called by the newly formed Justice for East Palestine Residents & Workers Coalition. Those in attendance included: East Palestine residents; railroad workers; residents of other “sacrifice zones" in Ohio, Maryland, California, and West Virginia; concerned citizens living near other rail lines; labor activists and labor union representatives; representatives of environmental justice organizations; (striking) journalists; socialists, Trump voters, non-voters, etc.; and more. As journalist Steve Mellon reported, "The newly formed coalition, dubbed Justice for East Palestine Residents & Workers, determined they will travel to Washington, D.C., on Oct. 8 to further their demand that the federal government step in and make sure those affected by the derailment are provided with fully funded health care. They plan to involve union members, including those who represent workers at railroad companies, as well as environmentalists and members of other communities damaged by chemical contamination. The coalition also determined to schedule a second conference in Iowa — the cause has been embraced by union organizers there; several traveled by bus to East Palestine to attend Saturday’s event — and to seek a meeting with the president of the AFL-CIO. Organizers want the federation of unions representing more than 12 million workers to support the coalition’s demand.”


In this extended episode, you will hear a compilation of speakers from the March 23 conference in East Palestine. Speakers include: Lauri Harmon, East Palestine resident; Chris Albright, East Palestine resident; Jami Rae Wallace, East Palestine resident, president of East Palestine Unity Council; Christina Siceloff, East Palestine resident; Rob Two-Hawks, East Palestine resident; Daren Gamble, East Palestine resident; John Palmer, longtime organizer and officer with the Teamsters, but not speaking on behalf of the Teamsters; Andrew Sandberg, International Association of Machinists (IAM); George Waksmunski, United Electrical Workers (UE); Chris Silvera,  Teamsters Local 808 Executive Secretary; Steve Mellon, journalist for the Pittsburgh Union Progress, on strike at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for 18 months; Vina Colley, Portsmouth-Piketon Residents for Environmental Safety & Security; Steve Zeltzer, WorkWeek; David Pfister, Food & Water Watch; Nicole Fabricant, activist, academic, and author of Fighting to Breathe: Race, Toxicity, and the Rise of Youth Activism in Baltimore; Hilary Flint, Clean Air Action; Penny Logsdon, Lee County, Iowa, Labor Chapter; Jeff Kurtz, Lee County, Iowa, Labor Chapter; Carrie Duncan, Lee County, Iowa, Labor Chapter; Maximillian Alvarez, The Real News Network; Mike Stout, Musician.


Additional links/info below…

Permanent links below...

Featured Music...

  • Jules Taylor, "Working People" Theme Song

  • Jules Taylor, "E.P. Theme for W.P."