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7/26/2005

AFL-CIO President John Sweeney: disaffiliation a tragedy for working people

Source: Workers Independent News

AFL-CIO President John Sweeney said in his keynote address to the AFL-CIO convention that the disaffiliation from the federation by the SEIU and Teamsters is a tragedy for working people.

“Pulling out of our convention dishonors the founders and the members of my union,” Sweeney said to loud applause. “It is a grievous insult to all the unions who helped us—and to the unions in this hall who came here to discuss and debate the difficult issues and make historic changes.”

Sweeney told delegates gathered at the convention that this split in labor’s ranks hurts workers.


“But most of all it is a tragedy for working people,” Sweeney said. “Because at a time when our corporate and conservative adversaries have created the most powerful anti-worker machine in the history of our country, a divided movement hurts the hopes of working families for a better life.”

So far SEIU and Teamsters are the only unions to announce their disaffiliation, but UNITE-HERE and the United Food and Commercial Workers union also boycotted the convention.

President Sweeney said in his keynote address :


“The labor movement belongs to all of us— every worker—and our future should not be dictated by the demands of any group or the ambitions of any individual,” said Sweeney.

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