SEATTLE — Union members and community supporters who are concerned about climate change and/or the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) are urged to participate in two actions in downtown Seattle today (Wednesday, Oct. 14): the 2015 People’s Climate March at 5 p.m., featuring special guest Naomi Klein, which will be preceded by a TPP street theater protest.
The People’s Climate March is a diverse coalition of communities of color, workers, immigrants, activists and everyday folk who will build upon last year’s wildly successful People’s Climate March in New York City. Participants in this nationwide event will send a message that will be heard from Seattle to Paris: Our communities are united in the fight against climate change, and the time for action on climate change is NOW.
TAKE A STAND — In Seattle, the march will take place Wednesday, Oct. 14. Meet at City Hall, 600 4th Ave., at 5 p.m. and march at 5:30 p.m. to Occidental Park, 117 S. Washington St. (See the event Facebook page for details.) Come a bit early to join the TPP Opposition Street Theater at 4:15 p.m. at the Federal Building, 915 2nd Ave., before joining the march. (Also check out its event Facebook page.)
Not only was last year’s People’s Climate March the largest action on climate in history, but participants successfully changed the notion that climate change was just an environmental issue. The march made it clear that this is also a social and economic justice struggle. Climate change affects low-income and communities of color disproportionately, and a just transition away from fossil fuels means making sure that no one gets left behind, especially the communities most affected, which includes the workers in fossil-fuel industries.
At the Oct. 14 march in Seattle, Naomi Klein will join speakers from all walks of life. Klein is an award-winning journalist, syndicated columnist and author of the international bestseller, The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism and This Changes Everything: Capitalism Vs. The Climate. She is also a member of the board of directors for 350.org, a global grassroots movement to solve the climate crisis.
For many of the same reasons that the American labor movement opposes the TPP — shift of production to nations with the weakest standards, corporate control over those regulations, loss of sovereignty, etc. — environmental groups and others concerned about climate change also oppose the TPP. With the news that a TPP agreement has been reached between trade ministers from the 12 participating Pacific Rim nations, now is the time to raise our voices against these NAFTA-like corporate-rights agreements that will cost American jobs, while harming both labor and environmental protections.
Stay tuned for more details as the date approaches, but in the meantime, mark your calendars to participate in these important events on Wednesday, Oct. 14.