By Romana Rubeo
The leadership of the AFL-CIO – the largest labor federation in the United States – is trying to prevent one of its affiliates from voting on a resolution that condemns Israeli violence and endorses the Palestinian-led boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement, The Intercept revealed on Thursday.
The Intercept obtained a memo sent in late September by an AFL-CIO official to one of its affiliates, the San Francisco Labor Council (SFLC), with the subject line ‘Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Resolution.”
NEW: The leadership of the largest labor organization in the country is trying to prevent its San Francisco affiliate from voting on a resolution that endorses boycotts of Israel, according to a memo I obtained. https://t.co/kYA6ZENADS
— Isaac Scher (@isaacscher) October 21, 2021
Citing a procedural stipulation that allegedly disallows local affiliates from “codifying positions that do not align with the AFL-CIO’s,” the letter suggested that the council “may not hold a vote on [the] resolution and thus any debate is not germane at your meeting,” the Intercept reported.
“This is direct censorship (…) and it is a slap in the face to every Palestinian,” The Intercept quoted Monadel Herzallah, a member of the national committee of the US Palestinian Community Network, as saying.
Following on the heels of teachers' unions in San Francisco, Seattle, and Vermont, the SF Labor Council is now considering a BDS resolution calling for the U.S. to "stop aid to Israel."
— Gabe Stutman (@jnewsgabe) July 15, 2021
The SFLC’s resolution was initially introduced in June, only a few weeks after Israeli actions in Sheikh Jarrah and the brutal military aggression on the besieged Gaza Strip. The resolution endorses any form of boycott “against Apartheid in Israel”, and urges US President Joe Biden to withdraw the $3.8 billion in annual military aid to Israel.
The BDS movement, which is facing hostility from many countries, including the US, aims at utilizing international pressure to put an end to Israeli military occupation and apartheid.
(The Palestine Chronicle)