Building Bridges Radio: Your Community & Labor Report

Produced and Hosted by Mimi Rosenberg & Ken Nash over WBAI,99.5FM in the NYC Metro Area

WHO WE ARE

WORKERS OF THE WORLD TUNE IN! Introducing "Building Bridges: Your Community & Labor Report"

Our beat is the labor front, broadly defined, both geographically and conceptually. We examine the world of work and workers on the job as well as where they live. We examine the issues that affect their everyday lives, with a particular sensitivity towards human rights abuses, environmental concerns and the U.S. drive for global domination. We record their global struggles and provide analysis of their efforts to empower themselves and transform society to provide greater democratic, human, social, political and economic rights. Each program consists of feature stories, generally interviews, within a historical context, often accompanied by sound from demonstrations, rallies or conferences, and complemented and enhanced by poetry and instrumental or vocal -- people's culture.

Over the years Building Bridges has produced a weekly one hour program, Mondays from 7-8 PM EST, covering local, national and international labor and community issues over radio WBAI-Pacifica 99.5 FM in New York. We also produce half hour version, Building Bridges National, which is distribtued to over 40 broadcast and internet radio stations.


For more information you can contact us at knash@igc.org
In Struggle Mimi Rosenberg & Ken Nash

Building Bridges:Teachers Strike and Protest in Colorado and Arizona -  

Teachers Take the Lessons of the Classrooms to the Streets
from West Virginia to Arizona and now Colorado
with
.  Joselyn Palomino, Denver High School Teacher of Mexican-
   American Literature
.   Cat Berrett, English teacher at Phoenix Union High School District


The victorious wildcat strike in W. Virginia ushered in a new wave of teacher and state worker activism and strikes organized by the rank and file with their unions racing to catch up.  Teachers without bargaining rights in Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona and where striking is illegal and their unions weak summoned their courage and walked off the job.  The most recent addition to this calvalcade of militancy is the Colorado teachers who with their union the Colorado Education Association shut down the statewide school
system for two days last week. At the same time Arizona teachers went on strike after weeks of militant demonstrations. . The strikes and mass protests often been led by the workers themselves forming new organizations often based on face book sites which host full-throttle conversations of what to do next such as Arizona’s face book group that organized the #RedForEd campaign and Kentucky’s KY120 United. They are fighting years of budget
cuts which translate into low wages and benefits and as importantly for these workers reduced school budgets meaning overcrowded classrooms, lacking basic supplies, updated books and educational materials. They are fighting for themselves and their students and have rejected deals to separate the issues.

Workers have been under brutal attack and unionization has been in decline for over 40 years. The employer offensive against unions has included all-out war against militant action and especially strikes. Yet it has only been in the periods of struggle and strikes for the private sector in the 1930’s and late 40’s and the public sector in the 1960’s that unions have grown and workers prospered. Now
the West Virginia workers have sparked workers across the land to embrace their rekindled militancy. 

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Huge Tragedy:Tennessee Workplace ICE Raid = 27:16  

Morristown, Tennessee subjected to the largest workplace raid by immigration authorities in over a decade.
with
Camila Fyler, Integration Director, The Tennessee Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition who has been stationed in Morristown since the raid to help coordinate financial Assistance to the families and secure legal representation for immigrant detainees.
and
Beatrice who has experienced the loss of many of her family member in the raids.in which hundreds of families have been impacted


Federal agents, with the assistance of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, stormed into Southeastern Provision, a meat-processing plant in Bean Station, TN. As helicopters circled above the factory and agents blocked doors, around 100 workers were rounded up and filed into buses without any opportunity to explain who they were, how long they had been there, or whether they were subject to federal immigration law at all. 54 community members living in East Tennessee for decades, some of whom had devoted over ten years of labor to that factory, were shipped out of the state without even a chance to say goodbye to their spouses and children. Their families were told nothing, and were left to wonder what had happened to loved ones who never came home.

This is a humanitarian crisis.  At least 160 children are missing a parent, nearly 600 students in a single school district have stayed home out of fear, and participation in the economy and community has been chilled.  Hundreds of
families whose lives have been torn apart.

It's hard to imagine another kind of crisis that would cause 5% of the district's children to stay home that wouldn't trigger some kind of intervention or at least public response.  We’ll talk with the people in Morristown and its surrounding
communities about the human costs of this unconscionable abuse of power on the children devastated by this assault on their families, and on the  thousands who are rightly afraid to go to work, take their kids to school, or even leave their
homes. The disaster stemming from the recent immigration raid continues to unfold. But, we know from similar raids in previous decades that the impact on children's health, on the school system, and on the local economy can last for
years to come.  This is no time for silence! 


Listen to stream or download

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International Labor Offensive to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal - 28:56  

A coalition for an “International Labor Offensive to Free
Mumia Abu-Jamal and All Political Prisoners” is gaining momentum.

with
Jacky Hortaut, union organizer, member of the CGT in France; an
American studies Professor in Tours and Clermont-Ferrand
Universities and author of a book about women in prison dedicated to
the “Move” sisters and chair of Collectif Libérons Mumia, and organizer
of a local chapter of Just Justice Tours Le Collectif, which represents
roughly 10 cities, unions, human rights associations, and political
parties in France.

and
Dr. Claude Gillaumaud Pujot, a professor in France who wrote the
2007 Abu-Jamal biography, “A Free Man on Death Row”, who says
“Mumia is an example to all of us because he remains an activist even
after spending 30-plus years in hell.”  
 

A call for freedom for Mumia Abu-Jamal and all political prisoners is picking
up steam, with solidarity actions on his status hearing on in Philadelphia,
plus a court hearing on April 30, which could eventually lead to his freedom.
After years of global community meetings, protests, petitions and legal
challenges, the people’s movement succeeded in taking Mumia off death
row in 2011 and elevating Mumia to internationally recognized stature. 

Mumia now has name recognition rivaling top-tier athletes and entertainers and
is considered a hero to all people seeking liberation - having inspired millions
around the world, from Berlin to Brazil, Georgia to Ghana, who rally regularly on
his behalf demanding he receive release or a new trial.  In France Mumia is
considered a freedom fighter because of his advocacy for the oppressed
everywhere.  Mumia is the “voice of the voiceless,” who chronicles the legacies
of people’s struggles worldwide and one of the greatest threats to U.S.
imperialism is the uprising of “young Mumias” from the streets of Philadelphia
to the streets of Paris. We’ll talk with French activists about their understanding
and concerns that our courts in rejecting all challenges to evidence of Mumia’s
guilt have fueled questions worldwide about the fundamental fairness about the
U.S. court system and demand that the freedom fighter Mumia, advocate for the
oppressed everywhere be released or receive a new trial.

Twenty-five French cities have made Mumia Abu-Jamal an honorary citizen
including Paris and two streets have been named after him in Saint Denis and
Bobigny. And, one-hundred and twenty European representatives have
mobilized for medical care for the now ailing Mumia, as he approaches his
64th  birthday.  Mumia has wrongly spent more than half his life in prison, most
of which time was on death row and in solitary confinement, before the Supreme
Court held that application of the death penalty to Mumia was unconstitutional
and instead shackled him with a life-sentence for a crime, the killing of a police
officer that he did not commit.  


Download or listen to this  28:55 minute program

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