SOLIDARITY REQUESTS FROM HERE THERE AND EVERYWHERE:
A number of appeals for online solidarity from various labour organizations have come to Molly's attention in the last few days.
First, from the United Farm Workers of the USA , comes an appeal for the State of California to clean up numerous violations of California labour law by farm labour contractors before the grape harvest begins in June. Violations include unpaid overtime, requiring the purchase of equipment from the employer, unsanitary toilets and retaliation for union activities. To see more about this campaign and to add your voice go to http://www.ufwaction.org/campaign/flc407 .
Also, on April 25th to 27th human rights advocates across the USA and Latin America will be holding a three day public fast to call attention to the victims of the School of the Americas (the US "torture academy" for training Latin American military men) and to pressure the US Congress to pass Bill HR 1707 and any amendments that would cut funding to or allow investigation of the School of the Americas. This event is being sponsored by the School of the Americas Watch. Interested people may write Joao Da Silva at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to announce their own event. You can also call the SOAW national office at 1-202-234-3440.
Finally, from the ever active Labour Start organization comes two appeals. One concerns the murder of labour activist Santiago Rafael Cruz. He was an organizer with the Farm Labor Organizing Committee who moved from the USA to organize with farm workers in Mexico. His activities generated attacks in the media, threats of deportation, robberies and threats on the part of those opposed to unionization amongst Mexican farm workers. This culminated in his murder. Labour Start is asking for help in pressuring the Mexican government to properly investigate this murder, prosecute those responsible and ensure the safety of union activists in Mexico. To join this campaign go to http://www.labourstart.org/cgi-bin/solidarityforever/show_campaign.cgi?c=232 .
Also from Labour Start: In Iran security forces called union activist Mahmoud Salehi to the local prosecutor's office on the pretext of discussing plans for the upcoming May Day celebrations. Salehi, a former president of the bakery workers' union in the city of Saqez was then arrested and sentenced to a year in jail with a further three year suspended sentence on top. His "crime" was that he had organized a May Day demonstration in 2004. To demand his release and the dropping of all charges go to http://www.labourstart.org/cgi-bin/solidarityforever/show_campaign.cgi?c=231 .