Today SEIU 721 members in Los Angeles and Oxnard joined marches honoring Dr. King’s legacy of civil rights leadership and tireless advocacy for labor rights and economic justice. In Los Angeles, a parade led by SEIU 721 members leaders like St. John’s Chief Steward Gary Poe marched with LA County and LA City workers and their families with banners marking Dr. King’s monumental achievements. Leaders from the SEIU 721 African American caucus organized our Local’s participation in today’s event.
As we celebrate Dr. King’s legacy, me must remember that although he is best known as a civil rights leader, he was also a fierce advocate of working people. In his final speech — given to striking Memphis sanitation workers the day before he was assassinated – he outlined the close ties between racial and economic justice, and the need for strong job rights.
In Oxnard, SEIU 721 members marched in solidarity, singing “We Shall Overcome” with their families and community allies. The 32nd Annual Freedom March is one of the largest community events in Ventura County, and brings out thousands of progressive leaders and community organizations. The march culminated at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center, where members heard from keynote speaker Dr. Gaye Johnson, President of Central Coast Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy (CAUSE), which advocates for social, environmental, and economic justice.
Dr. King’s legacy lives on. Even in the face of unprecedented attacks on working families, together we will stand up for union rights and defend the vital services our communities rely on. Together We Rise.