Many of the workers most essential in our communities and society, especially during the COVID-19 crisis, are also among the most low-paid, exploited and undervalued professions. Farmworkers, service and hospitality industry staff, gig economy contractors, healthcare workers, janitorial staff, and others. Even in the best of times, these workers are often denied basic health and safety precautions, subjected to unjust layoffs and not paid a living wage.
They deserve more - far more. To help all recover this pandemic, we need to give our frontline workers all the support they need. Just as we need to remedy the economic inequalities that divide our society in order to address the root of the climate crisis, we need economic justice to grapple with the outcomes of this pandemic.
3 ways you can support economic justice today:
Tell the Kroger CEO: Don't cut grocery worker's pay
From UFCW 21: “We're exposed to hundreds or thousands of people each week, which means an elevated risk of bringing COVID-19 home to our loved ones. We need the executives at Fred Meyer and QFC to keep workers and customers safe. We need meaningful limits on the number of shoppers entering stores. And now their parent company Kroger says it will take away our $2/hour “Hero Pay” on May 17th – even though the added burdens and risks of working through COVID-19 remain.”
Protect the health and safety of farmworkers
Fruit pickers in the Yakima Valley are striking over inadequate protections for workers during the pandemic - simple requests like allowing for the necessary six feet of social distancing, $2/hr hazard pay, and basic PPE are being denied. For more info about the strike and how to support, follow Familias Unidos por La Justicia
and let Governor Inslee know that all Washington communities regardless of who they are and where they live, deserve protection.
Donate to the Foundation for Working Families
The Foundation for Working Families is a non-profit organization established by the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO and its affiliates to assist union families in Washington state in times of hardship or disaster. It has provided cash assistance to hundreds of families who have suffered during flooding, wildfires, and now during COVID-19.
Best wishes to you, your family and community,