Many HR 676 Resolutions submitted to AFL-CIO Convention
From South Carolina to Alaska and California to Vermont over 40 labor organizations have sent in resolutions calling on the AFL-CIO Convention to endorse HR 676, single payer healthcare legislation introduced by Congressman John Conyers (D-MI).
The AFL-CIO convention will meet in Pittsburgh September 13-17th. The deadline for resolutions to be received is August 14.
On a warm breezy August Sunday afternoon over seventy-five retired steelworkers and their families enjoyed their annual picnic in Hopewell Community Park near Aliquippa, PA. The menu included corn-on-the-cob, kielbasa and kraut, roasted chicken with potatoes, salad, desert, and beverages. The event was sponsored by the Aliquippa chapter of SOAR, the Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees.
As the empty plates were cleaned away and the buzz died down, Marion Prasjner, Chapter 20-20 Chairman, welcomed the crowd and introduced the guests. Prasjner is also a leader of the PA 4th CD Chapter of Progressive Democrats of America. He introduced Marie Malagreca, the first national chairperson of SOAR, Jean Friday National Board member of SOAR, and Mickey Bolt PA coordinator for AAM.
Jim Centner, the National SOAR director reminded people to sign up for the bus to the upcoming Labor Day parade in Pittsburgh. Denise Edwards a SOAR board member thanked the members for the enthusiastic turnout.
Tony Rainaldi, an Aliquippa Chapter SOAR member, and former District 20 Director of the USWA spoke to the gathering. In a strong 85 year old voice he lambasted the Beaver County Times for its recent attack on local union leaders. He excoriated the television media for lying about the Democratic Party, President Obama, and the fight for healthcare.
He shouted: “Don’t listen to this bullshit you hear about socialism on TV. Unionization, pension protection, healthcare – if that’s socialism then we need as much socialism as we can get. I’m a socialist. The day I graduated from high school my Dad handed me a union card to sign and took me down to the mill.” This statement drew long and loud applause.