12 December 2005

In Support Of New York Transit Workers

33, 700 transit employees in New York City are contemplating striking if a new contract is not negotiated before the deadline of 12:01am Friday 16 December. It is perhaps superfluous to point out that such an action could bring this city of 8 million people to a grinding halt.

In the face of a 1 BILLION dollar surplus, the MTA transit authorities are insisting on a a hike in retirement age (from the current 55 to 62), an increase in new-employee contributions to their health care packages, and have countered the union demand for an annual 8% pay increase to a paltry 2-3%.

This is, of course, right in line with the move to smash American labor unions, membership in which has fallen precipitously since the mid 1970s. According to a recent article in the New York Times (12 December 2005, "Transit Strike? Unlikely, but..."), if the transit union remains "hotheaded" and "irrational" it chances a crack-down by Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Pitaki. Such measures - the specifics of which are uknown at this point, granted - could set a precedent for smashing other unions in, this, one of the most unionized cities in the country. In this way, Bloomberg and Pitaki could set national precedents and provide a case-specific example of how to dismantle large unions in other cities throughout the US.

We at Savage Justice express our full and unconditional solidarity with New York City transit workers. As for myself, I'm more than willing to ride my bike a couple of miles in the cold for your right to a sustainable existence. SHUT THE FUCKER DOWN!

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