Human Rights for All by the 99%For video and media of the day, click HERE.
Over 500 students, union workers and community members participate in day-long human rights conference and Human Rights Day celebration.
BURLINGTON, VT - On December 10, 2011, international Human Rights Day, the University of Vermont group Students Stand Up and the Vermont Workers’ Center (VWC) hosted a major all-day conference that drew more than five hundred participants throughout the day.
- More than 100 VWC members — including many students — participated in the annual Membership Assembly where the 2011 Human Rights Report was released.
- Human Rights Day Solidarity Action: Students, union and community members held solidarity actions, including one in which the Vermont Workers' Center dramatically cut up an over-sized version of their Bank of America credit card, as it announced its move to a local credit union.
- Over 350 people participated in workshops, which included Workers Rights and the Right to Education for the 99%, Healthcare Is a Human Right, The Labor Behind the Milk Jug: Building Solidarity for Migrant Justice in Vermont, Building Neighbors Who Care: Anti-Racism/ Anti-Oppression Work in Our Movement and Human Right to a Healthy Environment & Livable Planet.
- People’s Movement Assembly Panel: Senator Bernie Sanders and members from Students Stand Up, Put People First Campaign & Mobile Home Residents for Equality and Fairness, Migrant Justice, 350 Vermont, Vermont Center for Independent Living, Green Mountain Self Advocates, United Workers (Baltimore), Occupy Wall Street/NYC and CAAAV – Organizing Asian Communities. Meg Dunigan, a panelist, announced the launched of a new campaign, Vermont Parents United.
- Human Rights Awards: at an awards dinner, leaders from the Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign, Vermont Early Educators United, Vermont Migrant Farmworkers Solidarity Project/Migrante Justicia and Mobile Home Residents for Equality & Fairness were honored. A special Human Rights Hero award was given to Vermont farm worker Danilo Lopez for his personal courage standing up for the rights of thousands of the most vulnerable workers in the state. Read full press release here.
- Film premier: the Vermont Workers’ Center premiered a new film called Strength of the Storm (56 min) which chronicles a group of mobile home residents who organized together after their homes were destroyed in tropical storm Irene. In the aftermath of the storm, VWC members joined in disaster relief efforts in the hardest hit areas, Vermont’s mobile home parks that were built in flood plains. As we worked with the residents to recover and organize together to have a voice with government and relief agencies, we realized that they had powerful stories that needed to be told. Over 300 people watched the stunning premier of their powerful story of solidarity and transformation. We are now exploring film screening opportunities around Vermont for 2012. Watch the trailer and stay tuned for screening locations at www.strengthofthestorm.org. If you are interested in scheduling a film screening contact James Haslam at james[at]workerscenter.org
- Fundraiser: Thanks goes out to everyone who donated auction items or made a gift throughout the day -- it will go a long way toward paying for the conference. We raised more than $1,200 from the auction and more throughout the day. If you won an auction item and did not pay/pick up, please contact us at valerie[at]workerscenter.org to make arrangements. If you wanted to make a donation but did not get an opportunity, you can donate here: www.workerscenter.org/donate
December 10 Conference: www.workerscenter.org/december10 or call (802) 861-4892.
Watch the trailer for Strength of the Storm at www.strengthofthestorm.org.
Thanks to University co-sponsors: Center for World Education (CESS, UVM), The Environmental Program, UVM, UVM Departments of Sociology, English, and Geography,
United Academics, UE Local 267, Amnesty International UVM Chapter
Thanks to our Sponsors: United Nurses and Allied Professionals (UNAP), UPV/AFT, Vermont Center for Independent Living (VCIL), Green Mountain Central Labor Council, Champlain Valley Central Labor Council, First Step Print Shop