Local Activists and Residents to Rally and March in Honor of Worker Memorial Day

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—On Sunday, April 27, New Brunswick organization New Labor is co-sponsoring a march and rally with New Jersey Environment Council on Workers' Memorial Day.

Workers' Memorial Day is an annual international commemoration that remembers workers who have died or been injured while working.

The rally will begin at Lord Stirling Elementary School, located on 101 Redmond Street at 1 pm.

Dozens perhaps hundreds of supporters are expected to gather for the rally, and then depart for the march which will head down George Street, the downtown's main drag, as well as French, Bayard, Kirkpatrick, New and Redmond Streets.

This time of year, citizens across the globe participate in similar tributes to all those killed and hurt, while promoting safer working conditions and respect for workers’ health. 

During the New Brunswick event, testimonials will be given by injured workers and families of laborers deceased, describing what truly is occurring at places of work, and how citizens and workers can get involved to promote safer work environments. 

New Labor is based in New Brunswick, and comprised of over 2,000 workers and community members that fight to improve working conditions, and give a voice to temp workers, especially those from immigrant communities. 

New Labor also has offices in Newark and Lakewood, and provides many services for their members, including helping workers filing claims, free ESL courses, and organizing protests against employers. 

According to a recent VICE News national report,"The clustering of temp agencies in immigrant neighborhoods is most acute in New Brunswick, New Jersey." 

Many New Brunswick laborers hav esuffered abuses from employers, such as wage theft – the act of the withholding earnings for work performed, or paying workers less than the required minimum wage and overtime laws require.

As we reported, New Labor and others successfully pressured the New Brunswick City Council to pass an ordinance jeopardizing the business licenses of certain companies that commit wage theft, the first such law passed in NJ.

The march is also co-sponsored by the New Jersey Work Environment Council (WEC), an alliance of groups dealing with labor, environmental, and community issues that promotes safe and responsible work settings. 

For more information on the event, interested individuals can contact New Labor at 732-246-2900 or 732-762-7687, or the Workers Environment Council at 609-695-7100 x 308.

Jad is a local writer, organizer, and life-long resident of New Brunswick. He is a graduate of both Rutgers University and The University of Toronto.

He can be reached at 732-474-7924 and [email protected]