WHEREAS, 2022 has been a year of unprecedented attack against marginalized and oppressed groups in the United States. Legal and physical assaults against queer and trans people, and restrictions on the reproductive and medical freedom of women, trans, and non-binary people show that these struggles are connected intersectionally and perpetrated by those who want to preserve the institutions that oppress gay, lesbian, queer people, trans people, people of color and women. These identity-based struggles are also inextricably linked to the struggle of the working class; it is the working class which bears the brunt of these attacks, and disproportionately working class people of color.
WHEREAS, UE Local 150 joins in the chorus of voices expressing anger, dismay, and disgust in reaction to the unjust ruling made by the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. We condemn this ruling because abortion is a medical right, a workers’ right, and a human right. Abortions will not end in the United States – they will be pushed underground and made unsafe.
WHEREAS, we recognize this is only the beginning: members of the Supreme Court are now looking to completely strip away the rights to bodily autonomy and privacy against government intrusion, meaning that access to contraception, LGBTQ+ sexual activity, same-sex marriage, and other civil rights could be taken away. The Supreme Court’s undemocratic structure has been manipulated, and will continue to be abused, by conservatives to further marginalize and control those they perceive to be undeserving of rights: pregnant people seeking abortion and other reproductive care, trans and queer people, people of color, the incarcerated, the disabled, non-Christians, and workers nationwide.
WHEREAS, now is the time to organize to assert our right to bodily autonomy and to create a society that reflects that!
WHEREAS, abortion remains legal in North Carolina, but that right could soon be taken away by the State Legislature. We may fear the far-right takeover of the Supreme Court, but that fear must be turned into action. We must commit to militant, disciplined, and organized action in coalition with groups across North Carolina and the country that are dedicated to the betterment of workers’ lives and bodily autonomy. In the coming weeks and months, we will discuss strategies to maintain activism around this issue and continue to support on-campus, state and national organizations protecting abortion rights.
WHEREAS, fifty percent of mothers and three-quarters of Black mothers are the sole or primary breadwinners for their families. The huge gender income gap makes it even harder for them to provide for their families. Nationally, women earn only 80 cents for every dollar men earn. While this gap is slowly closing, at current rates the gender pay gap will not be erased until some time in the mid 22nd century. African-American women only make 63 percent of what white men bring home, Native American women make only 60 percent, and Latinas only make 55 percent.
WHEREAS, March 2021, on the 5th anniversary of HB2 in North Carolina, bills targeting the North Carolina transgender community were introduced in the General Assembly, criminalizing providing gender-affirming medical care to individuals under 21, allowing doctors to refuse care to LGBTQ+ individuals, and preventing transgender youth from playing on sports teams that reflect their gender identity.
WHEREAS, on April 14, over 400 medical professionals from around the state condemned the bills, stating that “These bills run counter to evidence in the medical community that improving access to LGBTQ-affirming care is a central means of improving health outcomes for LGBTQ people.”
WHEREAS, many trans people already lack access to affordable physical and mental health care because of our country’s profit-driven healthcare system. We recognize that erecting further obstacles for trans youth and adults 21 years and under can be a death sentence.
WHEREAS, the recent and rapid spread of Monkeypox has spurred anti-LGBTQ discrimination across the country.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, THAT THIS 12th UE LOCAL 150 CONVENTION:
- Condemns all attacks, both physical and political, on the basis of gender expression and/or identity;
- Calls on our chapters to defend our members aggressively against on-the-job gender-based discrimination and to oppose any employer public or private that engages in discriminatory behavior;
- Encourages all UE150 chapters to recommit our efforts to ensure a safe workplace, just compensation, and health care for all, including full access to contraception, abortion services and gender-affirming care;
- Affirms the resolution passed by the 77th UE Convention and encourages the Local and chapters to establish workshops on gender- and sexuality-based discrimination at all levels of our union in order to further education about the destructive nature of LGBTQ+ oppression among their members;
- Encourages members to join coalitions and actions across North Carolina against any attempts to cut access to any form of healthcare, including abortion, contraception, and gender-affirming care, by the State Legislature or Congress;
- Demands pay equity, recognize the intersection of race and gender, acknowledge and address the urgent political and safety issues experienced by women regardless of gender at birth, and commit to address pay inequality at all levels;
- Opposes attempts to strip transgender people of their right to gender-affirming, life-saving healthcare;
- Recognizes that sexism, homophobia and transphobia are tools used to divide and weaken working-class movements. An injury to one is an injury to all!
Submitted by the UNC Chapel Hill chapter