Across the nation, union members held more than 200 events demanding Congress focus on a real jobs creation agenda and speaking out—often in conjunction with the Occupy Wall Street actions in cities around the nation—against Big Banks and Wall Street greed.
Union members and concerned citizens took to the streets as part of the America Wants to Work national week of action.
In Wisconsin, events were held in Appleton, Eau Claire, Milwaukee, Racine and Wausau.
In Appleton, workers marched down College Ave in a funeral procession for good jobs, carrying a coffin filled with symbols of a strong middle class with good jobs for families. The march ended at Rep. Reid Ribble’s office where constituents urged Rep. Ribble to support the American Jobs Act which will put 20,000+ Wisconsinites to work.
A similar wake for good jobs event was held in Eau Claire where over 50 people gathered to mourn the loss of family-supporting Wisconsin jobs. Dave Anderson, President of the faith and community group Joining our Neighbors Advancing Hope, J.O.N.A.H, opened the memorial service with a short eulogy paying respect to the good jobs which are dearly missed in our communities.
Jobless worker roundtables took place in Kenosha and Milwaukee. Job seekers shared their stories of unemployment and the struggle to make ends meet in the current economy. They encouraged lawmakers to pass job creation strategies so the jobless can get back to work and feed their families.
In Wausau, unemployed workers rallied outside of Rep. Sean Duffy’s office to encourage him to pass the American Jobs Act and put people to work doing work that needs doing.
Allen Peltier, an unemployed welder from Amherst Junction said he has been unemployed since his job was eliminated three years ago. His wife works as a custodian at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and the pair have managed to scrape by with her salary and his unemployment benefits.
Peltier said Obama's proposal of putting people to work on infrastructure projects is suited for his skills and those of other Americans now unemployed.
"This can't be about politics anymore," Peltier said. "The American people should come first.”