(written by Chris Ottolino for the December issue of the St. Louis Socialist)
Healthcare providers represented by SEIU at Christian Care Home in Ferguson are well into their second week on strike over unfair labor practices. The workers – nearly 100 total, predominantly black women – have been on the pickets every day since December 1st, from 6 in the morning until 6PM, even as temperatures dipped well below freezing.
STL DSA, along with other local solidarity organizations like Jobs with Justice and the Workers Education Society, have been proud to stand side by side with these inspiring workers. A broad list of workers and organizers throughout the St. Louis labor community have also made their presence felt, along with a few elected officials. One of them, Rep. Bruce Franks, poignantly captured the essence of the struggle facing our movement and why only through solidarity can victory be assured:
“I’m not encouraging, I am demanding that you come out here with the people. At the end of the day, it’s about combining the fight and being intersectional. Fighting for police accountability and fighting for how workers are treated. Standing up for our unions, especially unions that are diverse and unions that are truly for their members.”
Material support like blankets or warm food and drink are still welcome on the daily picket lines, as well as toys and other holiday gifts for family members; nothing, however, is more meaningful than a large community presence showing the union we support them and all workers in the struggle for empowerment.
You can show solidarity with the workers on the picket by joining them any day 6am-6pm at 800 Chambers Rd, with rallies at noon and 5pm.