What unites working families is much more powerful than anything that divides them. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka expressed his desire to unite the labor and immigrant communities at the National Council of La Raza convention in Las Vegas, Nevada today.
Trumka spoke about the shared values the two groups have in common and how they are committed to working together to build a stronger America and a robust economy for future generations.
Here is an excerpt of his remarks:
You know, America’s history is the story of change and of embracing change. I can remember when I was little—I come from a small town called Nemacolin in southwest Pennsylvania, and the people in my town spoke a dozen languages. A dozen languages. I’m not kidding.
My father’s parents came to this country from Poland. My mother came to America from Italy as a baby girl in the arms of her parents. When I was little, every old person I knew spoke broken English. One day I was walking down the street with my dad, and he stopped to talk to somebody—an older immigrant who spoke broken English—and afterwards I asked him, “How old will you be when you start talking that way?”
That’s what I thought!
Everybody in that small town came from somewhere, just like almost everybody else in America. But we had a lot in common. We shared the American Dream, a simple and beautiful dream—the idea that if we work hard and play by the rules we can earn decent pay and good benefits, that we can look forward to a secure retirement in our old age and that we can offer our children a chance at a better life.
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