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MAY DAY 2014: Build & Strengthen the Migrant Workers Movement!

MAY DAY 2014: Build & Strengthen the Migrant Workers Movement

Filipinos in the US Resist Deportations, the TPPA, Neoliberalism; Call for Legalization

Reference: Bernadette Ellorin, Chairperson, BAYAN USA,

Filipinos across the US, under the banner of BAYAN USA, join the over 12 million undocumented peoples living in the US who continue to struggle every day for full dignity and human rights. Today we march with our sisters and brothers from Latin America, Africa, the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia, who came to the US searching for a better life and to escape from poverty, but were forced into the shadows and subjected to indignities of an inhumane system instead.

The worsening global economic crisis created by monopoly capitalism, aka imperialism, sees no end in sight under the current system. In order to survive its own crisis, US imperialism is driven to unleash the double-edged sword of war production and neoliberalism. On one hand, US imperialism pours billions of US tax dollars to increasing war and militarization overseas- in particular with its so-called “pivot to Asia”; while on the other hand, on the heels of the 20th year of NAFTA, the Obama administration brazenly pushes to consolidate economic hegemony in the Pacific Rim with the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

Global Forced Migration

NAFTA’s impact over the past 20 years provides ample evidence of how poverty and joblessness created by neoliberalism are what drive forced migration globally. As the economic crisis begets global economic displacement, the political crisis unleashes systemic state violence against migrant workers– in the form of deportations, raids, detentions, etc.– that aims to generate a surplus of cheap, fearful, undocumented, modern-day slave labor to generate super-profits for businesses and corporations. As the economic crisis intensifies, it is clear the US economy becomes more reliant on war production and industry outsourcing overseas, as well as dirt-cheap, undocumented and prison labor domestically.

It is in this context that in countries like the Philippines, labor export policies and illegal recruiters continue to run human trafficking and wage theft operations of skilled labor to US companies, abusing and exploiting the stratified work visa system in the US.

Build and Strengthen the Migrant Workers Movement

This past year we have also seen an escalation of bold, united actions of undocumented youth challenge the unjust and inhumane US immigration system. We salute the arduous struggle of the DREAMers that paved the way for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. We continue to see more migrant youth take bold actions at the US-Mexican border. We are inspired by the imprisoned immigrants who have conducted weeks of hunger strikes to protest deplorable prison conditions and the injustice of the mass incarceration of undocumented migrants. We find hope in the courageous undocumented immigrants and their families who have taken to the streets to demand an end to deportations as the Obama administration was deporting its 2 millionth person.

It is this fighting spirit of struggle that is needed to strengthen and consolidate a vibrant migrant workers movement in the US. The only way forward for working people is to build a people’s movement that can expose and challenge the structural policies that drive this oppressive cycle of forced migration and modern-day slavery.

As peoples movements around the world continue to fight against US imperialism, we have the responsibility here in the US to do the same. We do so linked firmly with peoples struggle around the globe.  And we will not stop until the day that genuine, sustainable development is attained for all, so that people migrate by choice and preference, not by force and desperation.

Stop the Deportations!

Stop State Violence Against Immigrants!

Legalization Now!

Resist the TPPA! Resist Neoliberalism!

Long Live International Solidarity!