Statement of AFT President Randi Weingarten and Secretary-Treasurer Lorretta Johnson on the St. Louis County (Mo.) grand jury decision in the police shooting death of Michael Brown:
“Tonight, the fact remains that on Aug. 9, an unarmed black teenager was shot and killed. Given that we are a nation of laws, one can only hope that the lack of an indictment isn’t tantamount to any lack of zeal on the part of the prosecutor to do the job he was supposed to do to enable the grand jury to arrive at an impartial and fact-based decision. Having said that, tonight’s decision isn’t the last word in seeking justice for Michael Brown, as the Justice Department is still pursuing its investigation. We echo the calls of the Brown family, clergy and Gov. Nixon for peace, restraint and protection for peaceful protesters.
“This case once again reminds us that there is still much work to be done to achieve racial justice in America. It tells us that our moral compass and legal systems do not always align.
“In moments like these, we should redouble our efforts to ensure all children grow up in safe communities with high-quality neighborhood schools and a local economy rich with jobs—no matter their ZIP code, race, ethnicity or sexual orientation.”
The People’s Climate March was a march for the ages, and UUP was a part of it.
Dressed in blue T-shirts emblazoned with the words “Climate Justice,” more than 40 UUP members joined hundreds of thousands of their labor sisters and brothers, environmental activists, students, actors, musicians, and other demonstrators calling for curbing climate change in the Sept. 21 march.
More than 310,000 people marched in the Manhattan protest; organizers, who expected about 100,000 participants, called the event the largest climate march in history. It dovetailed with climate change marches worldwide.
The march went off just days before a Sept. 23 U.N. summit in New York City on climate change.
“It’s imperative that we’re here,” said UUP President Fred Kowal. “I think what we’re trying to do is to bring some healing about for the planet and for our students because they’re going to inherit this world.” MORE