February 13 – 15, 2011
Workers and Organizers, Friends and Family:
In Wisconsin, the line is drawn stark. The governor has put the National Guard on high alert. Tens of thousands of workers and students will line the barricades in Madison—and for those whose bodies will be on the line this week, defeat is not an option.
Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin has declared war on state and municipal workers. In order to beat back his brutal attack, the nation’s oldest student-worker solidarity group and the pride of Madison’s labor Left, the Student Labor Action Coalition [SLAC], needs funds for bail and legal defense. And so we are turning to you.
In the coming week, Walker will try to pass a budget “repair” bill to strip nearly every worker and union in Wisconsin’s public sector of the right to collective bargaining. Walker intends to impoverish and humiliate hundreds of thousands of workers, rescinding the right to bargain for even the things that keep people alive: health care, pensions, respect on the job, safe and sanitary working conditions. Walker’s bill would reduce even the right to bargain over wages and salaries to a triviality.
Because Walker’s attack on workers is a front in a broader austerity regime, this fight is not only for the defense of public sector workers. It is for the defense of all the people of Wisconsin—and by example, the American people as a whole.
Walker proposes to seize the power to cut Medicaid spending from the Legislature and to place it in the governor’s Department of Health Services—an authoritarian measure that will lead to bone-deep cuts in the programs that keep pregnant women, senior citizens, and low-income families alive. Walker proposes to liquidate the State-owned heating plants that keep people alive in Wisconsin’s winter. As an alternative to the elimination of public sector workers’ right to collective bargaining, Walker proposes the elimination of at least 12,000 jobs.
We, the undersigned veterans and allies of the Student Labor Action Coalition [SLAC], rally to the defense of our younger brothers and sisters. They are fighting a battle we could not have imagined. This fight will not be won without non-violent direct action and civil disobedience—and Egypt gives us hope that we will win it.
We ask you to donate as much as you can for the legal defense of members of the Student Labor Action Coalition [SLAC]. Please send a check for $10 to $500 dollars made out to the Student Labor Action Coalition [SLAC]. You can send the check to:
c/o Eric Hoyt
140 W. Gilman St.
Madison, WI 53703
Scott Walker must be stopped—because if a program this brutal is enacted in Wisconsin, it will become the dominant model in the United States. Fire spreads.
Wisconsin is the first front, but the line is drawn stark everywhere: it is either victory over Scott Walker, or it is grinding defeat for workers and people.
Joshua Harry Goldman Healey
Jan van Tol
Veronica Bayetti Flores