SUPPORT THE INDIAN GUEST WORKERS HUNGER STRIKE:
Molly has been a little slow off the bat on this one as this appeal came in on May 21 (ie 4 days ago), but better late than never. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina various US corporations used the freebie federal monies to import "guest workers" into the New Orleans area, workers who were viciously exploited by their employers. US tax dollars are subsidizing this exploitation. This appeal on the part of the Jobs With Justice organization is for American citizens only. For those of us out here in the civilized world...well we can't participate. But for any of our American readers, please join in this campaign.
Support the Indian Guest Workers on Day 7 of Hunger Strike!
Support the Indian Guest Workers on Day 8 of Hunger Strike!
After Hurricane Katrina, billions of dollars poured into the Gulf Coast region to rebuild. Signal International used these funds to enrich themselves by using the exploitative “guest worker” visas and corrupt recruiters to hire workers.
Some of the welders and pipe-fitters who were brought to the Gulf Coast to work in what amounts to modern-day slavery have taken a courageous stand for justice. On May 14, five of the workers went on hunger strike demanding they be granted permission to stay in the U.S. while their case against their exploitative employer goes through the courts. They want to be granted continued presence in the U.S., and they’re asking that the U.S. Congress hold hearings on the abuses of the guest worker program.
With the hunger strike entering its second week, at least 5 more workers join the hunger strike today, while allies across the U.S. and in India fast in solidarity with the strikers.
You can help! Please urge your Representatives in Congress to sign onto a letter calling for them to remain in the U.S. and to hold hearings on Signal International.
Today is Day Eight of the water-only hunger strike by the Indian guest workers protesting the labor abuses of Signal International in the Gulf Coast. Hunger striker Christopher Glory's blood pressure dropped dangerously low late last night and is being monitored for possible hospitalization today.Nonetheless, the rest of the strikers’ spirits remain high as they prepare for the noon rally today.
Jobs with Justice coalitions are supporting the hunger strike today in 14 cities across the U.S. by fasting, circulating petitions, and educating their communities and congressional delegations about the workers’ demands. In India, 15 of the workers’ family members are taking part in a 24-hour solidarity fast. Their families are asking that the Indian Minister of Oversees Affairs to take concrete action on the workers’ behalf. Send a letter to the following decision maker(s): Your Congressperson Your Senators
You can take action on this alert via the web:
Visit the web address below to tell your friends about this
We encourage you to take action by June 30, 2008 Hold Hearings on Signal International!
INSTRUCTIONS TO RESPOND VIA THE WEB:
If you have access to a web browser, you can take action on this alert by going to the following URL:
Your letter will be addressed and sent to:Your Congress person Your Senators
----THIS LETTER WILL BE SENT IN YOUR NAME----
Dear [decision maker name automatically inserted here],
I recently learned of an alarming case of employer abuse that urgently needs your attention. Signal International has been using unscrupulous recruiters in India to lure workers to help rebuild after Hurricane Katrina.Welders and pipe-fitters from India paid recruiters up to $20,000 for the promise of permanent visas for themselves and their families. Upon arrival to the U.S. these workers were placed in cramped, unsanitary housing, charged exorbitant rent,and forced to work for Signal International. Their working and living conditions in the Gulf Coast amounted to modern day human slavery. I urge you to hold hearings on Signal International and their recruiters, and to ensure the workers can remain in the country legally while their cases are heard.
----END OF LETTER TO BE SENT----