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AFT 1789 Supports and Endorses Calls for Gaza Ceasefire

As educators at the Seattle Colleges, our Mission Statement calls us to prepare students to be engaged and successful in life, build a sustainable community, and adhere to the highest ethical standards. We teach our students that it is not enough to understand the world; that understanding must lead us to work towards a more just world in which all are safe and all are free, regardless of race, religion, or nationality. 

As workers, we recognize that solidarity is the necessary foundation for justice and liberation. As union organizers, we fight for our own rights and the rights of others, especially those who have been silenced and oppressed. In the past, US labor unions have joined international opposition to war, colonialism, and apartheid. United Electrical Workers explains the role of international solidarity in the labor movement: “As long as there are places where workers toil for starvation wages without health and safety protections, it’s hard to achieve or maintain good wages or conditions anywhere.”

Therefore, we heed the call of the Palestinian trade unions, and commit ourselves to speaking out in the face of injustice and taking action to stop companies and governments from funding or supporting Israel’s illegal siege on Gaza. Alongside our siblings in the labor movement, here and around the world, we commit ourselves to support student activism and work towards ending Israel’s occupation and the risk of genocide, as urged by the United Nations.

Therefore, we endorse the US Labor Movement statement against Israel’s ongoing violence against Palestinians. 

Therefore, we call for Seattle Colleges’ administration to foster an environment that encourages open dialogue and the free expression of diverse perspectives. We emphasize that the opposition towards unjust Israeli policies and actions is in no way directed against Jewish people or Israeli individuals. Conflating Judaism with the state of Israel falsely portrays Jews as a monolithic group supporting the oppression of Palestinians, thereby fueling antisemitism. We stand firmly against any form of hate, including antisemitism or Islamophobia, and advocate for separating political critiques from prejudiced generalizations.

We strongly advocate for a ceasefire and a political solution to address the Israeli apartheid system and the occupation of Palestinian territory. As union members, we are committed to uphold principles of equality and justice, and to advocate for a safe and thriving future for Palestinians and Israelis.

We continue to bring our individual abilities as educators and collective power as workers, alongside Seattle Colleges students, staff, and community members to press for peace, justice, and liberation for all in Israel and Palestine.

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