November 8, 2010

Campus Labor Coalition Resolution on FBI Raids on Trade Union, Anti-War and Solidarity Activists

The following solidarity statement was passed by the organization members of the Campus Labor Coalition (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Champaign IL including representatives from SEIU Local 73 Chapter 119, AFSCME Locals 698 and 3700, GEO IFT/AFT Local 6300, Campus Faculty Association, Undergraduate-Graduate Alliance, Operating Engineers Local 399, AAP-IEA, IEA-NEA, IATSE Local 482.) on November 1, 2010.   

FBI Raids on Trade Union, Anti-War and Solidarity Activists

Whereas: On September 24, FBI agents raided seven homes of anti-war activists in Minneapolis and Chicago, confiscating crates full of computers, books, documents, notebooks, cell phones, passports, children’s drawings, photos, videos and personal belongings. The FBI also raided offices of the Twin Cities Anti-war Committee, seizing computers; handed out subpoenas to testify before a federal Grand Jury to 11 activists in Illinois, Minnesota and Michigan; and paid visits and phone calls to others in Wisconsin, California and North Carolina; and

Whereas: Many of those targeted by these raids are trade union activists including Joe Iosbaker, chief steward and executive board member of SEIU Local 73 in Chicago, where he has led struggles at the University of Illinois for employee rights and pay equity, four members of AFSCME Local 3800 representing employees at the University of Minnesota, Jess Sundin, Steff Yorek, Anh Pham and Tracy Molm. In addition AFT 1943 Executive Committee member Masao Suzuki was visited by the FBI; and

Whereas: These unionists are in good standing and are well-known and respected activists and members of AFSCME and SEIU, unions that also include Campus Labor Coalition member organizations AFSCME locals 3700 and 698 as well as and SEIU local 73 Chapter, and

Whereas: the majority of those targeted by the FBI raids were involved in humanitarian solidarity work with labor and popular movements; and

Whereas: FBI spokespersons have stated that the raids were prompted by the activities of these individuals, and other individuals subject to the same raids, in seeking peace and justice for workers and other oppressed peoples throughout the world, and,

Whereas:  Campus Labor Coalition goes on record in defense of trade unionists and has consistently dedicated its efforts to educate, agitate and organize for the legitimate goals of peace, justice and solidarity with all working people, and,
Therefore be it resolved, that the Campus Labor Coalition of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign supports the following demands:

  1. Stop the repression against trade union, anti-war and international solidarity activists.

  2. Immediately return all confiscated materials: computers, cell phones, papers, documents, personal belongings, etc.

  3. End the Grand Jury proceedings and FBI raids against trade union, anti-war and international solidarity activists;