Tuesday, April 01, 2003

Anne's earthlink archive-wmd

+ Workers' Memorial Day +


Listen to War on the Workers

There is growing concern among all Americans as the death toll mounts in Iraq...
close to a hundred this month alone.  We remember how the 58,000 American deaths over the course of the war in Vietnam
just about tore this country apart.

Do you know how many US workers die every year as a result of going to work?

Most people are flabbergasted to learn that 60,000 death claims are paid annually
for work-related deaths. That's more *every* year than all GIs killed during the entire course of the Vietnam war.... almost
20 times the number who died on September 11, 2001. That's 164 workers every day. 

About one in ten of
those workers dies instantly ... The newspapers tend to chronicle these "tragic accidents" as human interest stories --
falls, electrical shocks, trucks jack-knifing, fires, collapsing walls in buildings, ditches, mines that take the lives of
some 6000 workers a year ...but the newspaper coverage seldom, if ever, looks into the often completely preventable causes
of these deaths -- workplace speedups, lack of proper safety equipment, mandatory overtime, shoddy substandard unregulated
construction, inadequate staffing. 

Only in the most outrageous cases, as when owners of the Imperial Foods
poultry processing plant in Hamlet, NC claimed that they "had to lock their workers
inside" to "keep them from stealing chicken parts," (twenty five workers burned to death on September 3, 1991), do we see
any investigation into employer fault. And even in that case, there was no trial.  Plea bargains and deals, but no real
punishment, and no real compensation to the victims or their families.

... Nine out of ten workers who die from
going to work do not even get a human interest story ... tens of thousands privately suffer lingering deaths from silicosis,
asbestosis, brown lung, black lung, cancers contracted from continued workplace exposure to carcinogens. 

remains to be seen how many work-related deaths will result from the workers who cleaned up toxic lower Manhattan in the aftermath
of September 11th ... It will not surprise safety and health experts if that death toll greatly exceeds the number killed
when the planes hit the buildings.
Our continent is covered with monuments to slaughtered workers... And corporations
still treat workplace safety the same way they treat pollution ... with a cost/benefit analysis.  Is it cheaper to fix
it or to pay the fines?  When it comes to workers' lives, it's almost always cheaper for companies to risk the fines
than it is to protect their workers.  I'm paraphrasing slightly here, but at a Workers' Memorial Day in Springfield,
IL in the early 90's I heard Lynn Martin, then Secretary of Labor, say to the assembled crowd of workers, "Employers have
made mistakes of judgment in the past ... treated their employees as if they were expendable... but now we now that workers
are valuable assets to companies, who make huge investments in their training."  That was the enlightened corporate-speak
of the early 90s and things have really deteriorated since then.

When workers do stand up to corporations, they're
in for the battle of their lives...

There is almost certainly some sort of Workers' Memorial Day observance
near you this April 28.  Click on the adjacent box to find the event nearest to you if you live in the US.

Worldwide, the conservative estimate of annual workplace deaths is 335,000.
For observances outside of North America try the
TUC -http://www.countmeincalendar.info/countme/CMICampaigns.nsf/UNIDs/AAD23CAC2ABA067185256DD700409E78

Workers' Memorial Day began in Sudbury, ON - certainly a dangerous place to work
http://www.clc-ctc.ca/campaigns/4-28/backgroundA-e.htm has information for Canada.

Remember Mother Jones' words: "Mourn the dead
and fight like hell for the living."  Raise your voice every day for a safe workplace. 


Listen to Harry Stamper's fabulous We Just Come to Work Here


Click on the photo to hear "War on the Workers"
War on the Workers
or Harry Stamper's "We Just Come to Work Here"

Miners' Monument at Ludlow, CO
Ludlow Monument
Read about the desecration & restoration

Utah Phillips

"Anne Feeney is the best labor singer in North America." -- Utah Phillips

Visit annefeeeney.com

"If I had a cause--and who doesn't--I'd want Anne Feeney singing for me." Stephen Ide, Dirty Linen

"Her genuine warmth and connection with the audience are apparent." -- Laura Post, Sing Out

"Anne Feeney seems to have arrived at the 21st century well ahead of most of her contemporaries." --Peggy

"Your music rings with a resonance of all that Peter, Paul and Mary has attempted to share." -- Peter Yarrow

This is a mural that Swedish artist Julie Leonardsson and I did with Ron Kalla's students at Schenley High School. It was
commissioned by the Service Employees International Union Convention. It depicts most of the significant events in Pittsburgh
labor history. It's mixed media -- collage & acrylic, and it's 12 feet wide and 8 feet high.

Julie Leonardsson just won a national award in Sweden for "best picture of 2001" with this satirical drawing of Prime Minister
Goran Persson with his cabinet ministers.

IN STOCK RECORDINGS *********************
HEARTLAND - Praise Boss * What Ever Happened to the Eight Hour Day? * War on the Workers * Irish Jokes * The Sick Note * Winter,
Go Away! * Football Hero * Rebuild America/Keep Hope Alive! * Ungrateful Child * Oh Bessie (Blues for Bessie Smith) * Power
of Love * The Victim Gets the Blame * After School * Tender Mercies * Afrika * Union Maid (1995) Live from corporate-ravaged
southern Illinois. cassette or CD *********** LOOK TO THE LEFT - Look to the Left * Ain't I A Woman? * Crooked House * Shell
Game * I Married A Hero * Me Case con un Heroe * We Just Come to Work Here * Scabs * National Health Care, Now! * Why Can't
I Have Nintendo? * We Do the Work * Raving Beauty * Record Time (1992)cassette or CD ********* UNITED WE BARGAIN, DIVIDED
WE BEG! - The U.S. Steal Song * We Do the Work * Fannie Sellins * Are My Hands Clean? * Are You Now or Have You Ever Been?
* Bread and Roses * We Just Come to Work Here * Your Nursing Heart * Punch It In * Which Side Are You On? * School Days End
* Solidarity Forever (1990)cassette only *********** THERE'S A WHOLE LOT MORE OF US THAN THEY THINK -- I Married A Hero *
Oak Tree * Ms.Ogyny * Queen Mary * All the Way Around * Take Them Down! * Terrorist * B Side * Whatever You Say, Say Nothing
* Only One * Dear Mr. President * The Galaxy Song/That's A-Plenty (1990) cassette only ***************** IF I CAN'T DANCE
IT'S NOT MY REVOLUTION -- Do-Re-Mi * Here's to You Rounders * A Chat With Your Mom * Dr. Jazz * I'm Gonna Be an Engineer *
Too Many Daves * S-A-V-E-D * Monkey Business * Amelia Earhart * Sheik of Araby/The Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gave to Me * Your
Mind is on Vacation * No Man's Land * Take Them Down! (1987) cassette only ******* GRAFTON STREET -- Whiskey in the Jar *
Mountains of Mourne * My Brother Sylvest * Nancy Whiskey * Arthur McBride * Wild Colonial Boy * Lark in the Morning * The
Dutchman * Spancill Hill * Phil the Fluter's Ball * Rising of the Moon * The Men Behind the Wire * Hey, Ronnie Reagan! (1987)
cassette only

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