From King 5 News by Lori Matsukawa. “Longtime Seattle activist Pramila Jayapal was one of 15 Asian Pacific Islander American women recognized by the White House as “Champions of Change” Monday.
As founder of “One America” shortly after the attacks of 9-11, Jayapal has worked for immigrant rights and immigration reform. When asked about the progress of immigration reform in Congress, Jayapal responded, “I really believe that we’re going to make it happen this year!”
Read the entire story and watch the video: http://www.king5.com/news/local/Seattle-woman-honored-as-champion-of-change-in-Washington-DC-206364721.html
One of the most interesting parts of this story is that one of the achievements Ms. Jayapal mentions is the work that One America has down around the Port of Seattle standing up for workers’ rights.
“Regardless of who hires them, all the jobs at the port should be living wage jobs,” she said. “That’s what this is all about.”
Behind a giant banner simply reading “UNION!” poverty-wage airport workers, faith leaders and community members marched down Pacific Avenue towards Alaska Airlines Global HQ. Reverend John Helmiere of Valley and Mountain United Methodist Church, wearing the white collar of his faith, glanced over at the over-sized letter informing the airline that these workers have formed a union, and then knocked on the locked glass doors.
Thousands of workers at Sea-Tac Airport are paid poverty wages. These are the cabin cleaners, ramp workers, fuelers, skycaps and wheelchair agents. They serve the customers of Alaska and other major airlines with dignity and respect–something unreturned by their employers.
Spencer a worker for Menzies, a poverty-wage contractor Alaska hires to handle its customers’ baggage, wiped his hands on his jeans, stood in front of the Alaska Airlines HQ sign and took the microphone from the TV reporter’s hand. Continue reading