Walking the Walk

October 18, 2023

Union members traveled to Washington, D.C. to pay tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King and continue the fight for racial equity in the United States.

Members travel-DC1-September-October.2023.final.jpgIt has been 60 years since 1199 members and their families traveled to Washington DC to march alongside fellow civil rights campaigners as they demanded voting rights. On that day in late August 1963, members heard Dr Martin Luther King, Jr deliver his legendary “I Have a Dream” speech.

To commemorate the historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom and in recognition of the fact that the fight for racial justice continues to this day, members again boarded buses on August 26, 2023 to make their voices heard in the continuing fight for civil rights, equality and economic justice for all.

Norkecha Battle, traveled all the way from Springfield, MA, to attend the march. She said: “I’m so excited to be here today. We know that 60 years ago to the day, Dr Martin Luther King marched here on these grounds fighting for the rights of workers and equality. That means a lot to me as a person of color. We’re here today to represent the workers of America, not just for minority groups. We’re here for all people. We’ve come so far, and we still have far to go. But I’m happy to be here today, making history.”

Members travel-DC2-September-October.2023.final.jpgAn 1199 Social Worker from Baltimore, Keith Booth, agreed: “It’s a historical moment. I was about six years old when the March on Washington took place with the late great Dr Martin Luther King. I’m here in commemoration of that history, which is part of American history, our history. I’m also here to deal with the issues in the present time —inequality in the health care profession, for example. I’m here in support of all workers.