Long-time MCHR board member Abayomi Azikiwe has been named as the 2021 recipient of the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights Bishop H. Coleman McGehee Champion of Justice Award. Abayomi, who joined the MCHR Board of Directors in 2006, is an author, a journalist, editor of the Pan-African News Wire and one of the Detroit area’s most well-known human rights activists and commentators.
In receiving the award at MCHR’s recent 2021 Founders’ Day celebration (an online event), Abayomi accepted the award and delivered the following remarks:
“I am deeply humbled and honored to receive this year’s Bishop H. Coleman McGehee Champion of Justice Award from the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights.
During the early months of 2006, some 16 years ago, I was asked by Dr. Gloria House, who is also a speaker for this event, to join the Board of Directors of MCHR…”
Click here to view full text of Abayomi’s statement.
Saeed Khan, a long-time MCHR board member and senior lecturer in Near Eastern and Asian Studies at Wayne State University, and Robert Bruttell, professor of religious studies and history at University of Detroit Mercy, have teamed-up to create a podcast series sponsored by the Interfaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit (IFLC). The podcast series,”Faith and Works,” will feature Detroit area experts representing various interfaith perspectives discussing community values in American society.
To read an Oakland Press report on the “Faith and Works” podcasts, click here.
To hear the “Faith and Works” podcasts, go to detroitinterfaithcouncil.com/metro-detroit-faith-community/faith-works-podcast.
Frank Hammer, MCHR’s global social justice warrior, was recently quoted in a report published by Avisan Denmark, a leading Danish newspaper. The article, which also cited Kelly Eubank of the Sunrise Movement, examined the importance and impact of a Biden presidency on the Green New Deal and the climate crisis.
To read the article click here.
MCHR invited you to a lively community discussion in the aftermath of the General Election. The event will be held at 7 p.m. on November 12, 2020 at Zoom and on MCHR’s Facebook page.
Join us for a discussion about the election and the future as we move into 2021.
To see the event notice please click here.
Frank Hammer and Stu Daily have reported a breakthrough for the ASOTRECOL group, which has been advocating for Colombian workers fired by General Motors. It is one of the biggest accomplishments in the 9+ year struggle.
Our injured Colombian former GM workers, who have organized under the name ASOTRECOL and maintained a tent encampment on the street 24-7 in front of the US Embassy in Bogota to protest their illegal dismissals, have successfully supported a new group of injured workers dismissed illegally by GM.
In February, just before the pandemic hit, GM received government authorization to reduce its labor force by 103. The government authorization explicitly stated that injured workers (who have some additional protections in Colombia) were not to be included.
We don’t know exactly how many of the 103 workers GM was authorized to fire were terminated from their jobs. We do know that 44 of these fired workers sought the legal counsel of Kemba the lawyer representing ASOTRECOL.
These workers increased their visibility (and subsequently ASOTRECOL’s visibility) by taking turns maintaining a presence at the tent encampment. This visibility was critical to one of two judges ruling on the side of the workers.
The attached video shows several of the workers dismissed in February at the tent encampment learning the news from Kemba on a video call, that the first 20 out of 44 who filed the legal process have been ordered reinstated immediately and permanently by the judge!!!
The only reason why only 20 and not all 44 workers were granted reinstatement through this court decision was the COVID pandemic. Due to COVID, this trial was conducted virtually and there were technical reasons for restricting the size and number of files that could be transmitted via email (instead of presented in person in the court). Therefore, we have reason to believe that the remaining 22 fired workers will be reinstated in a second wave of this trial.
We also have video (see link below) of these reinstated workers vowing to remain vigilant and fight for the reinstatement of their fellow injured and dismissed workers.
As you can imagine, this has been a huge morale boost for Jorge and the other ASOTRECOL members who have worked to maintain this constant struggle and occupation of the tent encampment since August 2, 2011. They continue to show GM that until they settle with the workers, they will not have an easy time continuing their practice of dismissing workers injured on the job.
The message coming out of this win? When we work together we are powerful.
The struggle continues. Thanks to the working class brothers and sisters participating in the collective struggle to improve labor conditions in all countries of the globe.
To view the video of celebrating reinstated Colombian GM workers, click here.