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Labor Ranks Urge United Action

More Unions Back Call for National Labor Conference

UAW Asks Local Conferences of All Unions
to Pave Way for Nation-Wide Joint Action

(15 June 1946)

From The Militant, Vol. X No. 24, 15 June 1946, pp. 1 & 2.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

A wave of demands for united labor action to resist the Big Business-government union-busting drive is sweeping all sections of the American labor movement, according to reports from coast to coast.

The proposal of the CIO United Auto Workers for a national united labor conference in Washington of the CIO, AFL and Railroad Brotherhoods is beginning to gain backing from local and even state union bodies.

A further immediate step for the preparation of such a national conference was urged in a resolution adopted last week by the UAW International Executive Board. This called for local united labor conferences throughout the country. Local conferences and joint mass meetings have already been held in a number of leading cities, including Los Angeles, Chicago Akron and Buffalo.

Many Endorsements

Last week, immediately following the UAW’s call for a national united conference of labor, other unions quickly took action to advance the campaign for such a conference. New Jersey State CIO leaders, the Buffalo CIO and a number of local unions have endorsed the UAW proposal.

The New York branches of the AFL Seafarers International Union and Sailors Union of the Pacific, which last week engaged in the AFL seamen’s one-day work stoppage, passed resolutions unanimously in their membership meetings in support of the national conference of labor plan.

At the same time, the all-out offensive of the Truman administration and Congress against organized labor has given a strong impulsion to the movement for the formation of a national independent labor party.

This is reflected tn resolutions being adopted increasingly by local unions calling for the building of a labor party. Enthusiastic response has greeted all references to a labor party at mass meetings held in many cities last week to mobilize united labor action.

Labor Party

The growing sentiment for a labor party was reflected in a speech last week at the United Hatters, Cap and Millinery Workers Convention by David Dubinsky, president of the 330,000-member AFL International Ladies Garment Workers Union. Dubinsky endorsed the creation of a national independent labor party and declared that the union leaders “cannot satisfy themselves with a party that includes the Southern reactionaries or the industrialists in the Republican party.”

Truman’s most recent threat to labor, his preparations to use armed forces to break the scheduled CIO maritime strike on June 15, has underlined the completely anti-labor program of the capitalist government and its domination by Big Business.

The need for united labor action on a national scale is of the utmost urgency. The UAW’s proposal for a national united conference of all labor unions should rouse immediate support from all labor bodies.

Every local and state union, CIO, AFL and Railroad Brotherhoods, should immediately go on record and demand the calling of such a conference in the shortest time possible.

The initiative and inspiration for united labor action on a national scale must be provided through local conferences and mass meetings everywhere. The local union ranks must not wait. They must put the prods to the top union leaders to act – and act NOW.

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