Feb. 14, 2018
Sanitation work remains mortally dangerous 50 years after the Memphis sanitation strike, where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated while campaigning to help workers gain a union for better pay and safe working conditions.
Every working person in America must have the freedom to stand together with their co-workers in union to win improvements in pay, benefits and safety.
Message of the Day—Honor King with Worker Freedom
The deaths of two Memphis sanitation workers, crushed by a trash compactor in 1968, sparked a six-week strike that ended with a union and better working conditions after the assassination of King on April 4.
Half a century later, sanitation workers with unions work under vastly improved conditions, even as work for nonunion, private sanitation companies remains deadly.
Malfunctioning trash compactors are still a leading cause of death.
Worker safety has been and remains a key concern of working people who want to organize to form or join a union on the job.
America’s labor unions want every worker to have the freedom to negotiate with co-workers so we can safely return to our family at the end of the day.
Kitchen Table Economics
439: That’s how many workers in sanitation, waste and remediation died on the job in 2016.