According to Encyclopedia Britannica,
“Strike, collective refusal by employees to work under the conditions required by employers. Strikes arise for a number of reasons, though principally in response to economic conditions (defined as an economic strike and meant to improve wages and benefits) or labour practices (intended to improve work conditions). Other strikes can stem from sympathy with other striking unions or from jurisdictional disputes between two unions. Illegal strikes include sit-down strikes, wildcat strikes, and partial strikes (such as slowdowns or sick-ins). Strikes may also be called for purely political reasons (as in the general strike).” What does this mean to workers, families and the community? As a proud, experienced executive member of the UAW and Chairperson of the Women’s Committee, I have a good grasp of the UAW values. We believe in solidarity. United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) believes in economic justice, collective bargaining, job security, educational training, cost of living allowances, employee health/safety insurance and a seat at the table of human rights.
Where do you stand on these issues? Are they important to you? Perhaps you feel as if your concerns aren’t being heard or taken with the seriousness that they should be taken. Perhaps you’ve been a hard worker or know a worker who is seeking economic fairness. Are you seeking job security, has made monumental life changes and decisions in waiting for the American dream of a equal honest day pay for a honest day of work. Are you sacrificing your comfort and risking your health and well being for a multi-billion dollar company, who view you as replaceable and non beneficial? It’s my opinion that when we all work shoulder to shoulder, arm to arm, that’s where our strength lie. That’s taking a step towards your future and well being.
How to stay healthy during a strike :
1. Take air into the lungs and then expel it, especially as a regular physiological process.
“breathe in through your nose”
2. Take care of your body. You have to put your health and well being as a top priority. When you practice self care, then you can assist others. Have you ever been on an airplane? When safety instructions are being given, it’s usually stated “ place the air mask on yourself, then assist others”. This is an act of survival and wellness.
3. Eating the proper foods is very necessary. It’s been said , “ you are what you eat”
4. Keeping a calm mind is important. Our inner strength, being more confident, thankfulness , our ability to remain stress less are important during interrupted life challenges.
5. Engage with your community. Solidarity, was built on a group of like mined individuals, stay involved, don’t isolate yourself, stand together. Each one teach one. During these times of uncertainty, being on strike, its important to know with certainty WHO WE ARE and What we are known as.
At the core, labor unions (we) are working men and women, unified as one force. Despite any personal differences that may exist between us, we have banded together to protect and improve the lives of workers. We rise up together for the greater good. We defend one another like family.
SUE CARNEY, “We’re Not a Fee-for-Service Organization”, The American Postal Worker, March/April, 2014