LA Campaign Update

by on September 30, 2014

LA Workers Assembly Congratulates Hotel Workers on Wage Hike Victory

Inspires Current Ballot Initiative for a $15 Minimum for All in LA

The Los Angeles Workers Assembly would like to congratulate all of the labor, community organizations and especially the hotel workers themselves who brought about the historic victory to raise the living standards of hotel workers in the city of Los Angeles. And, like any victory for social justice that is won in the city of Los Angeles, it will reverberate nationwide and help empower and embolden workers struggling for economic justice everywhere and in every industry.

The struggle for a livable wage has taken center stage thanks to the work of these and other low wage workers, from the fast food workers with their courageous and historic demands for $15 and a union to the retail workers like those fighting for a union and livable wages being called for by the workers representing Our Walmart.

Already many states in the U.S. have passed or proposed increases in the minimum wage that exceed the federal minimum. This increase in dealing with poverty wages did not come about on its own. It reflected and was a response, many times a defensive response by local governments, to the demands of low wage workers and progressive organizations fighting for a $15 minimum wage.

The fact that this occurred after over 35 years of wage decline while profits have soared highlights a clear lesson that we’ve been taught many times over by history, and that is – to quote Frederick Douglass – “If there is no struggle, there is no progress,” and “Power concedes nothing without a demand, it never did and never will.” Mr. Douglass was referring to the potential power of the struggles of the politically and economically oppressed.

That struggle for a $15 minimum wage is still alive and well. The Los Angeles Workers Assembly is now collecting signatures for its $15 minimum wage initiative ordinance, for the next four months. That wage is part of a demand that comes from low wage workers fighting for $15 and a union, it comes from the organizations and activists working in and supporting the work of the LA Workers Assembly, who include members of Our Walmart, and with the official endorsement from the United Teachers of Los Angeles, the South Central Neighborhood Council, Greater Echo Park Elysian Neighborhood Council, Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace, Peace and Freedom Party, Martin Luther King Coalition and many churches in South Central Los Angeles like the Ray of Light Missionary Baptist Church, KRST Unity Center for African Spirituality and many more in a growing list of those who refuse to stop for nothing less than what is required for a livable wage now.

Thanks to the hotel workers and their allies, and shame on the three council members in the City Council who voted against this historic victory – their attempted denial, like those attempting to deny the right to a real livable wage for all workers in Los Angeles will continue to be swept aside by the struggles and demands for justice from low wage workers and those communities in which they live.

Los Angeles Workers Assembly (323) 306-6240

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