The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, representing 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, acting through its General Executive Board hereby adopts the following Resolution this 15th day of November 2011:
WHEREAS, "Occupy Wall Street” is the foundation of the nationwide protest against economic inequality, unfair tax structure, bank bailouts and corporate greed that has affected every worker in the United States, including every member of the Teamsters Union, and brought the country to its current economic crisis;
WHEREAS, just as "Occupy Wall Street" demands that the nation respond to the unrelenting pressure on the middle class, on workers and on the unemployed, the Teamsters have exposed the "War on Workers” being waged by billionaires and CEOs who seek to blame working people for the state of the economy and to "fix" the economy by giving to the rich and taking from the middle class;
WHEREAS, the Teamsters share the outrage of “Occupy Wall Street” over the foreclosure crisis, over out-of-control health care costs, over attacks on pensions, over the fact that corporations are sitting on more cash than anytime in history while millions of able-bodied workers cannot find a job, and that Teamster children may not achieve the standard of living their parents achieved and may never own a home or a pension;
WHEREAS, Union members must fight to keep the gains they have achieved through collective bargaining as corporate-backed politicians attack public sector workers with the same ruthlessness they exhibited in the past 11 months, and private sector employers are following their example;
WHEREAS, just as workers’ rights to organize, picket and strike are abrogated based on unjustified allegations of a threat to public safety and health, “Occupy Wall Street's” Constitutionally protected right to a peaceful protest and assembly must be protected and cannot be curtailed or contained based on unsupported claims of public safety;
WHEREAS, the lockout of 43 Teamsters art handlers by the profitable auction house Sotheby’s has become for “Occupy Wall Street” a symbol of the unrelenting greed of the 1 percent, and “Occupy Wall Street” has for weeks acted in solidarity with the locked-out Teamsters from Local 814;
WHEREAS, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg ordered Liberty Park cleared of all “Occupy Wall Street” protesters and the New York Police Department entered the park with police in riot gear backed up by numerous police vehicles, including a bulldozer, evicting occupiers, destroying property and arresting dozens of occupiers and protesters, including New York City Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez and District Leader Paul Newell, in the early morning hours of November 15, 2011, and
WHEREAS, attorneys working as the Liberty Park Legal Working Group obtained a temporary restraining order directing that occupiers be allowed back on the premises with their belongings.
NOW, THEREFORE, it is resolved as follows:
The International Brotherhood of Teamsters and the working men and women it represents wholly supports and endorses Occupy Wall Street and opposes any effort to unreasonably restrict, contain or stop this lawful protest; and
The International Brotherhood of Teamsters commends and extends its appreciation to New York Supreme Court Judge Lucy Billings for issuing a restraining order that restores the Constitutional rights of “Occupy Wall Street” to peacefully protest.