Amid global calls for racial justice and equality sparked over the killing of African-American man George Floyd last month in Minneapolis, Sheet Metal Workers Local 28 released a statement yesterday applauding the "peaceful protesters" in the Black Lives Matter movement.
Authored by Eric Meslin, Local 28 president and business manager, the statement shows solidarity in the right for people to protest and reaffirms Local 28's commitment to combat social injustices. The full statement reads:
As the country mourns the death of George Floyd, we as a union remain steadfast in our commitment that an injury to one, is an injury to all.
The Labor movement was born out of a need to combat social injustices and now is the time to stand shoulder to should in a show of solidarity and compassion for one another. We will continue to demand that ALL people are treated equally with the respect and dignity they deserve.
Protest is a core fundamental of the Labor movement, one which we have relied on for our entire existence. We applaud the peaceful protesters of all races and share in their grief and outrage over the horrific and unjustified murder of George Floyd. My hope is that the uncivilized rioting does not overshadow the many who are legally and justifiably voicing their anger and pain.
Although I do not know what it feels like to endure the trials and tribulations of living in this world as a minority, I would have to be blind or ignorant not to see and feel the pain that my brothers and sisters of color are going through during this latest incident of injustice.
Local 28 will not turn a blind eye to discrimination and social injustice. We must come together in unity to stop the division and hatred that has gone on for way too long, and do all we can to help heal the wounds of the past.
The Local 28 Sheet Metal Workers union represents Metropolitan New York and Long Island.