Workers of the World Unite!
We Will the Battle of Ideas!
Solidarity Coalition for a United Latin America
Organizes Successful Mayday Celebration!
By Sarah Alwell
On Saturday May 3rd, over 70 people gathered at the Chilean Housing Co-op in Vancouver for a celebration of International Workers’ Day (May Day) 2008 organized by the Solidarity Coalition for a United Latin America (SCULA). The event recognized the challenges to be fought and the rights still to be won by millions of workers in Latin America and throughout the world. Masters of Ceremony Tamara Hansen, coordinator of Vancouver Communities in Solidarity with Cuba (VCSC), and Jose Angel, organizer with the Solidarity Coalition for a United Latin America, welcomed everyone to the event outlining the importance of International Workers’ Day.
The event began with a showing of the film “Zoned for Slavery” about the deplorable conditions for women working in factories in Honduras. The film was opened by Rosa Quiero of the Solidarity Coalition for a United Latin America.
Following the film, Waldemar Mozen, active in revolutionary movement in Guatemala, opened the evening with an inspiring message of struggle and solidarity with workers around the world. The group Viva Chile!, a bundle of young energetic children, then wooed and warmed the crowd with traditional dances from Chile.
Following the wonderful performance, Fred Muzin President of the Hospital Employees’ Union spoke about the struggle of workers, the recent wave of strikes in Canada and the importance of unions and the labour movement to defend workers and their right to protest. Ali Yerevani, political editor of the Fire This Time newspaper, passionately emphasized the importance of internationalism in the working-class movement and gave historic and present examples from the Russian Revolution to the Cuban Revolution, which prove that a better world is possible!
Next up was the spectacular all-woman bluegrass group Boothill, who wowed the crowd with their excellent talent and beautiful voices and left people cheering for more. Nacson Espinoza, an organizer with SCULA, then gave a report on behalf of the coalition about the situation for workers around the world. The night ended with a beautiful reading of revolutionary poetry from Alejandro Olea and Oscar Villalobos.
After a night of food, performance, speakers and politics, participants left the event inspired and charged, ready to continue the fight for social justice and the rights of workers around the world!
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