GEU-UAW Local 6950 Statement of Solidarity with Charlottesville, Virginia

Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Heather Heyer, a fellow unionist killed in action in the struggle against white supremacy and fascism. We condemn the egregious violence and bigotry of white supremacists and fascists, and as a multicultural and diverse organization of workers we vow to stand up to their toxic actions and ideology. We are appalled by the events that transpired in Charlottesville, VA, and the lack of a strong response demonstrated by our nation’s President. President Trump has emboldened white supremacists through a rhetoric of exclusion and hostility, with the goal of pitting us against each other in a race toward the bottom. As we process this weekend’s events, we remember that white supremacy and fascism are one and the same. While our nation does not have the same tradition of fascism we often associate with Europe, there are critical overlaps: from violent, racist, sexist, ableist, homophobic, and transphobic ideology, to the subjugation of working class people for capitalist interests. As we mourn, we must continue to organize, and to ensure the wellbeing of our union and the people in our communities. Throughout the world, working class people have sacrificed their lives combating the core ideas of fascism. As a union of graduate workers, we have a moral obligation to continue that fight and protect each other from those who would do us harm. The bulwark against fascism has always been and will always be a vibrant, organized, diverse working class, unbending to an ideology of hatred, fear, and domination. To the brave people who stood up to the forces of hatred in Charlottesville, we thank you for your courageous work. We hope to make you proud as we strengthen our contract in the coming bargaining negotiations, and join you in ending all acts of hate.

In solidarity,

The GEU-UAW Executive Board

Steven Manicastri-President
Danielle Bousquet-Financial Secretary
Kathleen Ragon-Recording Secretary
Madelynn von Baeyer-Sergeant at Arms
Siavash Samei-Guide
Monique Golden-Trustee
Shaznene Hussain-Trustee
Neil Oculi-Trustee