‘Democracy Spring’ is Opportunity to Demand Progress


With the 2016 election looming, unions plan on joining other civil rights, environmental and community groups next month in the nation’s capital to make their voices heard as part of a campaign to restore U.S. democracy.

“Democracy Spring,” to be held April 11-18, is meant to bring thousands of people together to “collectively denounce the partisan and wealth divisions” now tearing the U.S. apart and to “demand a nation that works for all Americans,” the AFL-CIO announced this week.

The campaign flies in the face of the economic tilt to the 1 percent and of the refusal of congressional leadership to even consider proposals that would help workers, much less vote on them.

Democracy spring is “an opportunity to fight forward and to reclaim the economic narrative that supports working families,” the labor federation’s executive council added. It also shows unions and their allies want to “build an independent political movement that aligns with our shared values,” it adds.

Those values include eliminating income inequality, restoring voting rights, strengthening the right to unionize and enhancing women’s rights.

The plan for an independent political movement is also an implicit criticism of both major parties and business and financial control by the elite and corporate interests of Republicans and Democrats.

 Key issues that the Democracy Initiative, www.democracyspring.org, will tackle include: Protection and expansion of voting rights, preventing corporations from buying elections, “changing structural rules to ensure every voice and vote counts equally,” and demanding “full democracy” – which is undefined – “at all levels of government.”

The AFL-CIO argues that “Institutions of government need to function on behalf of the people, regardless of who has power.  This is bigger than parties, politics or profits.”