Trumka addresses BLE

AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Richard L. Trumka was presented with a BLE Brass Bell by International President Edward Dubroski on June 6 after Trumka delivered a powerful speech at the BLE's International Western Convention in Jackson Hole, Wyo.

Trumka complimented BLE leaders for their organizing success and highlighted the challenges that lie ahead for organized labor.

During his speech, Trumka thanked the BLE for being part of the organizing drive in which the AFL-CIO has gained 250,000 new members in two years.

"Over the last two years, nobody has done a better job of organizing than the BLE," Trumka said. "With total BLE membership now at 59,000, you are setting standards for much bigger unions to follow - that's incredible."

Trumka also cited key issues the AFL-CIO plans to tackle in the months ahead, such as improving health care benefits and protecting social security.

"The year 2000 can be more than the beginning of a new century - if we do our job in the federal, state and local elections this fall it can be the beginning of a new future for working families and our union movement," Trumka said.

"We cannot and must not remain slaves to the status quo - American workers deserve better health care and pension benefits, our children deserve better educations, retired American workers deserve better Social Security and Medicare benefits."

"For working families and our unions, the elections this fall aren't about Democrats or Republicans, or recapturing governmental bodies or winning political races. They are about recapturing moral authority for the values we share and winning a piece of the prosperity we do not share."

Click here for full transcript of Brother Trumka's speech.


2000 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers