Building Bridges Radio: Your Community & Labor Report

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


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
In Struggle Mimi Rosenberg & Ken Nash

NYCHA Housing New York’s Flint - 28:52  

NYCHA Housing New York’s Flint:  While Tests Showed Children Living in NYCHA Apartments Were Being Poisoned by Lead, the de Blasio Administration’s Response was to Challenge the Tests

special guest, NY Times, investigative journalist, David Goodman

Mikaila Bonaparte has spent her entire life under the roof of the New York City Housing Authority, the oldest and largest public housing system in the country, where as a toddler she nibbled on paint chips that flaked to the floor.  In the summer of 2016, when she was not quite 3 years old, a test by her doctor showed she         had lead in her blood at levels rarely seen in modern New York. 

Two Thousand children living in New York City's public housing have been poisoned by lead in recent years, a shocking new report issued by the city's Department of Health reported showing how many kids younger than 18 were found with elevated levels of the toxic substance in their blood. And, this is just the tip of the iceberg! Meanwhile, the city’s response to NYCHA children whose ingestion of lead is toxic to many tissues and organs including the bones, heart, kidneys, intestines, and reproductive and nervous systems and the brain, which is the organ that is the most sensitive to lead exposure was to deny the evidence.  

While the mayor claimed at a Bronx press conference had he been presented along the way that these reports from the Department of Health that were being contested, “that would have been the day that we started the process of turning all that around.” In fact, he had mountains of evidence “presented” to him.  The Daily News, for example, wrote in April 2015 about the Housing Authority’s habit of contesting every positive lead test: When a 2-year-old who’d spent his whole life in a Brooklyn project tested positive, NYCHA performed a test and declared the apartment lead-free.  NYCHA contested 95 percent of the “positive” tests it received from the city Department of Health from 2010 to 2018.  As early as May 2016, e-mails obtained by The Post showed, NYCHA officials briefed top levels of City Hall that 202 children had tests showing elevated lead levels in 2010-2015. In April 2016, it was revealed that then-NYCHA chief Shola Olatoye had lied about conducting apartment inspections, which the agency had stopped from late 2012 through May 2016; de Blasio still insisted on defending her. Still new emails released by City Hall show that de Blasio apparently tried to hide the extent of the problem from the public.

Amidst these revelations, tenants are outraged. Danny Barber president of NYCHA’s citywide “Council of Presidents said, “He lied. He outright lied and if it was anybody else that lied they would be locked up and put into jail. We’re tired of it. The mayor should be held accountable.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Mexico’s New President's Stands on Trade & Immigration = 28:28  

Mexico "will never be the piñata of any foreign government," AMLO has said. What we know of Mexico’s New President, Andrés Manuel López Obrador "AMLO" positions on the Renegotiated NAFTA Trade Agreement & Immigration 

Laura Carlsen, the director of the Americas Policy Programme, Centre for International Policy; she is based in Mexico City.

Andrés Manuel López Obrador , commonly known by the acronym AMLO, took his seat as Mexico's new President on Saturday. However, it’s been four months since AMLO, won Mexico’s presidential election promising during his run to usher in a "fourth transformation" of Mexico giving us some insight into his relationship to the US on trade and immigration.

Migrants (including women, children, and families) have trekked across Mexico headed towards the US-Mexico border to apply for asylum in the United States. Many have walked over 3,000 km across Mexican territory with only their backpacks, their children, and their chants, fleeing violence and poverty at home. Since the migrants set off, president Trump has tweeted his opposition and threatened both Honduras and Guatemala with sanctions if they were to allow the caravan to cross their borders and has sent the military to the US-Mexican border. And recently the Mexican government responded by sending riot police to the border to prevent the migrants from crossing. The images of black-clad security forces using their shields against mothers and babies were shocking and disturbing. The visibility of the migrant caravan – aided in part by Trump’s tweets and statements – has forced a discussion on how undocumented migrants are treated in Mexico and what role the country would play in future. In fact, Mexico’s southern border has seen a steady increase in checkpoints, detention centres, and guards. At times, Mexico has been responsible for deporting more Central American migrants than the United States. However, we don’t expect AMLO to pay for Trump’s wall either - he did publish a book called "Oye, Trump" ("Listen Up, Trump") and he has condemned Trump’s plans to build a border wall

And, while U.S. relations didn’t count as a deciding factor for Mexican voters, the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement "NAFTA" has been a dominant issue during the transition period resulting and has now resulted in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement "USMCA" which an AMLO team participated in negotiating and which Trump called the teamwork "fantastic." And while AMLO said he would work to tackle the poverty in Mexico, where an estimated 44 percent of Mexicans live below the poverty line and 7.6 percent in extreme poverty will the USMCA mean raising wages and create jobs in Mexico? Laura Carlsen will probe the terms of the replacement of NAFTA by the USMCA and discusse whether it represents a confrontation looming on the horizon, as it continues the same economics AMLO professes to oppose.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CNN Bows to Israeli Lobby Firing Palestinian Advocate Marc Lamont Hill -28:59  

CNN Shamefully Bows to Right-Wing Mob in Firing of Analyst Marc Lamont Hill, After His UN Speech Calling for Equal Rights for Palestinians  
Ali Abunimah, Founder of The Electronic Intifada, whose books include One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse, and The Battle for Justice in Palestine. He has been an active part of the movement for justice in Palestine for 20 years.

   "I called for a single democratic state where everyone votes.
    Jews, Muslims, Christians and everyone else deserve to live
    in peace and safety. And with self-determination. No one’s
    freedom should come at the expense of others."
Dr. Marc
    Lamont Hill

"This is precisely the message Israel and its lobby are most terrified of -- because it resonates with ordinary people. This is why they smear and defame people who call for justice and equality.”  Ali Abunimah wrote this after CNN abruptly fired Temple University professor, political commentator, and Black Lives activist Dr. Marc Lamont Hill after he was falsely smeared as anti-Semitic for his testimony at the United Nations, where he eloquently discussed Israeli apartheid, intersectionality between the Black and Palestinian freedom struggles, and a one-state solution of justice and equality for all people throughout historic Palestine.  

Wrote Abunimah: "The accusations against Marc Lamont Hill are outright lies promoted by high-level operatives of the Israel lobby in their latest effort to silence and punish anyone who dares speak out in support of Palestinian equality and freedom from Israel’s brutal regime of occupation, settler-colonialism and apartheid.
They perfectly match the kind of smear and sabotage tactics revealed in the censored Al Jazeera documentary on the U.S. Israel lobby that was recently published in full by The Electronic Intifada."

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

California Should Take OverCommercial Utility PG&E for Climate Justice - 29'  

How California’s Fire Weary Public by Taking Over the Commercial Utility Behemoth PG&E Could Cast a Vote for Climate Justice
Johanna Bozuwa is a Research Associate at the Democracy Collaborative which works to carry out a vision of a new economic system where shared ownership and control creates more equitable and inclusive outcomes, fosters ecological sustainability, and promotes flourishing democratic and community life.  Her  research focuses on energy democracy and the just transition away from the fossil fuel economy.

A long-awaited report of the federal government, notwithstanding the climate destructionist policies and practices of Trump, has delivered an unmistakable message on climate-fueled disasters: The effects of climate change, including deadly wildfires, increasingly debilitating hurricanes and heat waves, are already battering the United States, and the danger of more such catastrophes is worsening and poses a severe threat to Americans' health and pocketbooks, as well as to the country’s infrastructure and natural resources. However the report avoids policy recommendations despite its sense of urgency and alarm. 

Now, amidst the potential bankruptcy of the California utility PG&E, whose negligence is believed to have played a role in California’s most recent devastating fire, along with three other wildfires across the state in 2017, there is an opportunity for the public to take control of the state’s energy destiny.  California’s takeover could serve as a model for other states fed up with the predatory practices of investor-owned utilities and jumpstart a wider shift across the country toward democratically controlled renewable energy.

play stream or download

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Amazon HQ2 Plan To Turn NY's Long Island City Into a Company Town - 28'  

Queens Residents Are Outraged Over Amazon HQ2 Plan To Turn LIC Into a Company Town
Maritza Silva-Farrell is Executive Director of ALIGN (Alliance for a Greater New York)
Greg LeRoy is executive director for Good Jobs First and is quoted in the New York Times recently as saying “as we documented in a study last April, the Crystal City and Long Island City subsidy offers are among the many HQ2 bids that remain completely hidden. Citizens have no idea what their elected officials have promised to a company headed by the richest person on earth.

Community organizations representing more than 200,000 members across New York City and State are concerned that NY is rolling out the red carpet for Jeff Bezos’ Amazon.  Why are the Mayor and Governor handing the keys to the city to Amazon, whose market value, which surpassed Microsoft's in February 2018, making Amazon the world's third most valuable company?  Bezos holds 78.9 million shares of Amazon stock. He is now the richest man of all time, with an estimated net worth of $105 billion dollars. 

play stream or download

AddThis Social Bookmark Button