October 2023


United States


Open letter from rank-and-file members of the UAW (International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America)

Dear UAW International and Fellow Unionists,

We, rank-and-file members of the UAW and allied community members/organizations, stand unequivocally in solidarity with the Palestinian people. Following the call by Palestinian Trade Unionists to end complicity in their oppression, we call upon workers everywhere, our union leadership, and the UAW International to demand an immediate end to Israel’s brutal siege and bombardment of Gaza and all military funding going toward Israel.

We watch with horror as the U.S. sends American troops to assist in an Israeli ground invasion of Gaza. We mourn the loss of civilian life. We categorically reject U.S. support of the murderous Israeli regime in its ongoing genocide of Palestinians, which has killed over 7,000 people and injured 16,000 more in airstrikes since October 7, and has cut off water, food, and power to Gaza’s population. We stand in solidarity with Palestinian workers who have renewed their call for academic institutions and unions worldwide to stand with the Palestinian people.

We call on the UAW to endorse and implement the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) call from Palestinian civil society, which urges nonviolent pressure on Israel until it “meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people's inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law by:

  1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall
  2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and
  3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.”

Historically, the U.S. labor movement has failed the Palestinian people. For instance, the American Federation of Labor (AFL) advocated for and helped finance the construction of Zionist settlements, directly contributing to the displacement of Palestinians. It is a moral imperative for us to acknowledge this history and push the labor movement to act on the side of Palestinian liberation. Advocating for a BDS resolution is also directly tied to our material interests; workers in the U.S. are struggling against many of the same capitalist forces that maintain and bolster the Israeli occupation of Palestine. These forces rely on racialized exploitation, dispossession, and policing in the United States and around the world. As argued by the League of Revolutionary Black Workers and Arab Workers Caucus of the UAW, a global class of workers will not achieve liberation if fragmented by colonization, apartheid, and borders. These are the structures on which an ascendant global fascist movement is shoring up white supremacy, nativism, militarism, heteropatriarchy, and other tools of oppression to further divide us. No longer will we stand for investments that aid in the genocide of Palestinians.

As members of the labor movement, we call on U.S. labor unions to cut all ties with Israeli unions. We call on the AFL-CIO to terminate its relationship with the Israeli Histradut. We additionally call on U.S. unions and our employers to divest from Israeli bonds and from the military, extractive, and technological industries connected with the Israeli occupation and U.S. imperialism. Furthermore, we demand that the UAW International and AFL-CIO immediately convey to the United States government a demand to halt all aid and military support to Israel. Failure to do so amounts to organized labor’s complicity with, and support for, the ongoing genocide.

We further demand that the UAW and our locals protect workers who engage in pro-Palestine speech and advocacy -particularly Palestinian, Muslim, and Arab workers- from doxxing, surveillance, and repression within the workplace. Additionally, the UAW must not overturn democratic decisions made by the rank-and-file, as it did when UAW 2865, UAW 2322, and GSOC-UAW 2110 voted to support BDS in solidarity with the Palestinian people in 2014 and 2016, respectively.

As unionists, we must always stand on the side of justice, both in word and in deed. In light of Israel’s recent intensification of attacks on Palestine as well as the past 75 years of Israeli crimes against the Palestinian people, we stand firmly in solidarity with the struggle for Palestinian liberation. Already, UAW members have spoken out, joined marches, and walked out in support of Palestinian liberation. We will continue fighting for the liberation of the Palestinian people and we commit to taking direct action against the occupation in the coming weeks, including educating our colleagues on the occupation, disrupting the military industrial complex, standing with anyone in our workplaces facing retaliation for their activism around Palestinian liberation, and, if necessary, striking in our workplaces.

Until Liberation and Return,

UAW Members

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Without exception,ALL the parties taking part in the elections,despite their promises, will deliver a future of more unemployment, lower wages, more hardship, more evictions, more homelessness, more exclusion from education, death and destruction through starvation and Aids.

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