Unions for Racial Justice: Interview with AFL-CIO’s Richard Trumka

By Channing Kennedy Jan 29, 2009

Not long after Obama took office, ARC’s Tammy Johnson spoke with the AFL-CIO’s Richard Trumka about his rousing speech to the United Steelworkers Union, calling for the labor movement to fully embrace Barack Obama. Visit FreeChoiceAct.org to learn about and endorse the Employee Free Choice Act. Trumka tells Tammy what motivated him to address race head-on, and how the AFL-CIO’s endorsement of ARC’s Compact for Racial Justice represents the next step.

I thought that if we started talking about it, and if we started a conversation, that we could get past it. Because we couldn’t allow anything to stop us from getting what I consider to be the best friend, and the best president, that working people are ever going to get. I mean, it just doesn’t get any better than him.

Trumka on the need for the Compact for Racial Justice in a post-Obama America:

We still have a lot of work to do to address these things, and to strike a real blow against what I consider to be the most evil system on the face of the earth, and that’s racial discrimination.

Watch Trumka’s July 1 speech here: Watch part 2 of this interview here on Racewire, in which Trumka discusses the Employee Free Choice Act and its potential to correct job quality disparities for communities of color. Stay tuned to Racewire for more from Richard Trumka on the Compact for Racial Justice and the Employee Free Choice Act.