By Leo Blain
On Saturday, September 9, at 6 a.m., a crowd of approximately 40 young people marched down Country Club road in Greensboro, North Carolina, before stopping in front of the home of U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy to demand his resignation for his attacks on the United States Postal Service and mail-in voting. The action was organized by the Sunrise Movement, which has come to be known for its highly visible actions calling on power-holders to stop climate change and create millions of good jobs in the process. Tim Greene, a former recording secretary and current delegate to the Triad Central Labor Council spoke on behalf of the Triad CLC in support of the Sunrise activists.
In an interview after the event, Greene said that his goal was “to let young people know that there are still union activists in North Carolina.” We can “help them in their arena as well.” Greene recognized that the Triad CLC would not be able to support all Sunrise Movement priorities. However, he did note that “Sunrise seems to be specifically interested in helping the post office” and “maintaining good-paying jobs.” That shared priority was why Greensboro Sunrise hub coordinator Haydyn Foulke was led to invite Greene to the event. Foulke said,
We’re really concerned with preserving the USPS and the APWU (American Postal Workers Union). Even though ultimately nationally some of our goals might not be exactly the same, I think locally we align on a lot. We want to build community coalitions. It’s about relationships, and it’s about standing together on the things we align on.
Could this kind of collaboration between the Triad CLC and the Greensboro Sunrise hub be a model for other CLCs and Sunrise hubs to follow? Foulke thinks “it’s essential that we start this kind of collaboration, and hopefully this can be a good first step towards collaboration between Sunrise and CLCs.”
Leo Blain is the Social Media and Online Community Manager for the Labor Network for Sustainability