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Vol. 76/No. 1      January 2, 2012

Workers protest ‘silent raid’ firings
RICHMOND, Calif.—Some 200 workers, family members and supporters rallied at St. Mark’s Church here Dec. 18 to protest mass “silent raid” firings at Pacific Steel Castings in nearby Berkeley.

The foundry fired more than 200 workers—immigrants mostly from Mexico—following an Immigration and Customs Enforcement audit of the company’s workforce. About one-third of the workers were declared to be “nonresidents.” Some have worked here for 20 years.

“They’re being punished for working, which is what people in our community are supposed to do,” said Rev. Deborah Lee, director of the Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights and an organizer of the rally. “We will not let this happen in silence, nor allow these workers to be treated as though they are invisible.”

The fired workers were members of Local 164B of the Glass, Molders, Pottery, Plastics & Allied Workers International Union, which conducted a strike in March.

Three workers from Maple Leaf Bakery in Richmond came to the rally in solidarity. The three—members of Local 125 of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers union—told the Militant that Maple Leaf bosses are also asking employees for documents. More than 100 workers are employed at the bakery.
Related articles:
Ohio tire workers rally bolsters lockout struggle
Amid piece rate, injuries, bosses press speedup
‘Sugar bosses underestimate us,’ Midwest unionists say
Longshore fight against union busting intensifies
On the Picket Line
Alabama action stands up to attack on immigrants, workers
Workers protest ‘silent raid’ firings
Los Angeles march demands ‘no deportations’  
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