The Mountain Party, The Working People’s Party, stands in solidarity with workers and their right to collectively bargain on this May Day, known also as International Workers’ Day. Our party will continue to support existing unions and will come to the aid of those unionizing their workplace.
As we honor laborers, we are solemnly reminded of our past. Nearly 100 years ago, the country experienced the largest labor uprising in its history during the final conflict of the West Virginia Mine Wars. Inspired by Mother Jones and Bill Blizzard and armed by Socialist Party activists, the miners demanded fair wages, the freedom to trade, improved workplace conditions, and union recognition. They were ultimately confronted by both private armed forces and the U.S. Army with its bombers from the first World War at the Battle of Blair Mountain in Logan County. While a loss for the miners, unions would gain strength and encourage FDR to implement the New Deal.
Today, peaceful avenues exist for workers to organize in their workplace, and we encourage workers to take action starting today.
As laid out in our platform, the West Virginia Mountain Party believes in banning “right-to-work” laws and guaranteeing the rights of all workers to form a union and engage in collective action. Furthermore, the Mountain Party believes in the implementation of economic democracy through direct workers’ control over the means of production.
And we practice what we preach. The paid staff of the Green Party of the United States, our national affiliation, are represented by the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), the union co-founded by Mother Jones. The West Virginia Mountain Party has also endorsed efforts by workers to organize their workplaces, including the statewide school personnel strikes, the recent unionization of the workers at the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition as the OVEC Union (organized by the West Virginia IWW) and the Kroger workers of UFCW Local 400. West Virginia workers interested in helping to organize their workplaces may contact the West Virginia IWW at firstname.lastname@example.org.*
*The IWW, both at the national and local level, does not endorse any political parties or candidates.
See Also: The Mountain Party proposes a Green New Deal for West Virginia, to create high paying, secure jobs to build the future economic infrastructure based in clean, renewable energy.