To Transit Workers Union Local 100:
We, the teachers of Health Professions High School are in solidarity with the striking transit workers of TWU Local 100. We recognize that their strike is in the interest of the working class.
We would like to thank you for fighting back against fines, threats, and the power of the MTA, the city, and state governments. Thank you for, as Bloomberg says, “immorally and selfishly” breaking the anti-union, anti-working class, and unjust Taylor Law. By fighting for what is right, you illustrate the essence of justice and morality to all workers and students.
While the strike will cause short term suffering for workers living in New York, it is a sacrifice that benefits and supports workers everywhere in the long term. The strike exposes the underlying problem of the working class’ eroding standard of living due to rent, gas, and food prices rising faster than our wages. Executives use the lowest wage they can pay one union to set the pattern of bargaining for future union negotiations; you are forcing them to raise the wage for all bargaining in future union negotiations.
Thank you, the transit workers of the TWU for not just fighting over the narrow demands of wage increases and pensions, but against dangerous speed ups, toxic work conditions, and the general interests of the working class. Your working conditions are our living conditions, because we must ride the transit system on a daily basis. Your solidarity across racial and gender lines will help all who must work for a living. When unionized workers’ rights erode, the non-unionized workers suffer even more.
Thank you for not “eating your young” so that only one section of the TWU benefits, and illustrating solidarity across age, time, and experience barriers. You are fighting to raise the future wages of our students, as the rights you fight for now will set the pattern of bargaining for them in the future. We will support you by joining your picket lines during our off hours, raising funds for your sacrifice, distributing this letter, and by raising awareness of your struggle among students, parents, and staff.
You are fighting to preserve the legacy of a union’s power by fighting for your own self-interests, as opposed to hoping for the goodwill of the MTA at the bargaining table. You said that “cutbacks means fight back” and you meant it. Thank you for being an example to all workers in this time of unions capitulating to the bosses’ demands and thus sacrificing our living standards. We thank you, support you, and are emboldened by your actions.
The Teachers of Health Professions High School