Day 2: Showing Spirit


Members of the Teamsters National Black Caucus (TNBC) were recognized for turning dreams into reality Thursday, when they were presented with the Spirit of Detroit Award by Detroit City Council Member Brenda Jones.

The award is given to persons or groups who show commitment and service to the citizens of Detroit. The 36th Annual TNBC Conference is currently going on in Detroit, a city with strong civil rights and labor history.

“The spirit is in your heart. It’s not about that statue, it’s about what’s inside,” Jones said. “You are displaying that spirit by being here today, by turning dreams into reality.”

Jones is a card-carrying union member who has fought on behalf of working people her entire life. In a passionate address, Jones encouraged TNBC members to stay united, educate young people and continue fighting for middle-class families.

“I fight for working people every day of my life. I fight for labor because I am labor,” Jones said. “We all need to fight because we are all in this together.”

The second day of the conference also marked Women’s Day, which recognizes women for their work and contributions to the labor movement. TNBC members will attend a lunch dedicated to the late Clara Day and Eula May Cleveland. Both women helped build the Teamsters Union.

“None of us would be where we are today without contributions from the great women in our lives,” said Antonio Christian, Executive Director of the TNBC and Chairman of the Teamsters Human Rights Commission. “Today, we recognize that work and thank women for their contributions to the labor movement.”

The conference will continue through Saturday. While in Detroit, TNBC members will have the opportunity to explore more of the city’s labor and civil rights history.

View the slideshow from Day 2, here.