Saturday, December 10, 2005

SF Garment Workers Take the Struggle to City Hall and the WTO meeting in Hong Kong!

Many parents in our San Francisco public schools are garment workers and other service sector hotel and restaurant workers. These posts below show some of the difficulties and uncertainties in the lives of many parents and their children in San Francisco west and east side neighborhoods like the Richmond [where I live], the Sunset, but also Chinatown, Visitacion Valley, the Tenderloin, the Portolla and the Bayview Hunters Point communities.


Because of the rise of Globalization or Global Capitalism, as some call it, garment industry workers in SF have been decimated from 20,000 in the 1990's to only about 2000 today.
But San Francisco Garment Workers are resisting the negative impacts of globalization and taking their struggle not only to San Francisco City Hall but also to the global powers at their WTO meeting Hong Kong. For example, former Nova Knits workers have organized themselves with the help of the grassroots Chinese Progressive Association.

For more background see:
SF Chronicle Nov 05 or this earlier SF Chronicle article from Jan 05
SF Bay Guardian Asian American Movement Ezine
Associated Press San Francisco Chronicle



And, these workers and their allies are taking their fight straight to the WTO - meeting in Hong Kong later this coming week - and to a grassroots conference of global justice organizers and activists that begins today in Hong Kong. They are makers of history, not the elites.
Check out these great posts from the Bay Area anti-globalization warriors who blog at BAYAREA WT-NO!



Chinese-American Garment Workers Lose Jobs.....to China (re-post)
This is a link to the Up Front Radio story, featuring, among others, Workers and Alex from CPA, Victor Menotti from IFG, and a professor from UC Berkeley. Publlished Dec 6, 2005 on New America Media website.

From New American Media.com


The garment industry has a long history in San Francisco, starting when Levi Strauss and Company opened its first factory here nearly one hundred years ago. In the early nineties, there were 20-thousand garment workers in San Francisco. Now, only about two thousand remain as jobs moved to Mexico and China. Ironically, all of San Francisco’s garment workers are Chinese immigrants, many of them middle-aged women who don’t speak English and have few transferable skills. Zoe Corneli reports, a pilot program in San Francisco is giving these garment workers new hope in the new, global economy.

Lastly, the Hong Kong People's alliance has a great website too with lots of info and perspectives from the struggle for global justice in the East. Events begin today and conclude with a massive Concert Against the WTO at Victoria Park! Wish I were there. But there are many young activists from the SF Bay Area that will be bringing back their stories and adventures.
For more on the events -

Saturday, December 10

Globalizing Economic Justice and Social Sustainability (December 9, 10)YMCA Youth Village, Wu Kai Sha
Ecumenical Organizations in HK

People's Resistance Against Globalization and WTO: A Speak-out on Trade and Human Rights 2:00pm - 6:00pm, JIL Church
Asia Pacific Research Network (APRN)APMM, AMRC, DAGA

TU-NGO Seminar Workshop on "HK's Missing Agenda: SDT and Development for LDCs"
Union Network International (UNI)AMRC

Sunday, December 11

March/Rally (Victoria Park to Central Government Office)2:00pm, Victoria ParkCultural Events/Solidarity Night
8:00pm, Victoria Park
HKPA

Rice Festival Mobile Cultural Performances (December 11-18)Victoria Park & other locations to be announced
PANAP Save Our Rice Campaign

Migrants Workers and WTO: Migrants’ Wage & Underpayment Campaign and Solidarity Against WTO8:00am, Victoria Park
Institute for Global Justice (IGJ), AMC, CMR, MFA, IMWU, KOTKIHO, AP

Monday, December 12

Global Ecumenical Women's Forum on Life-Promoting Trade (December 12, 13, 14)YMCA Youth Village, Wu Kai Sha
Ecumenical Organizations in HKWCC, CCA, HKWCC, ACISCA, HKCI

Trade for Jobs9:00am - 1:00pm, Duke of Windsor Social Service Building
ICFTU, Global Network, GPF, WCLHKCTU

Regional Seminar on Improving Labour Rights in China 3:00pm - 8:00pm, Duke of Windsor Social Service Building
Global NetworkHKCTU

Why are we in Hong Kong, and why we are protesting? An assessment of 10 years of the WTO, what's at stake in the WTO negotiations, overview of the week aheadThematic Morning, Victoria Park
OWINFS

Book Launch and Discussion with authors: "Alternative to Economic Globalization"3:00pm - 6:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
International Forum on Globalization (IFG)

WAR AND TRADE: Militarism and Neo-liberalism - a two-headed monster?
6:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Focus on the Global South

Press Conference12:00pm - 1:00pm, HKPA Media Centre
People's Caravan for Justice and Sovereignty

Asia Social Movements Assembly
6:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Focus on the Global South, KoPA,Stop the New Round (SNR)

Catholic WTO Forum4:00pm - 7:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Korean Catholic Farmers

Tuesday, December 13

Opening Public Assembly and Rally
11:00am, Victoria Park
HKPA


Global Ecumenical Women's Forum on Life-Promoting Trade (December 12, 13, 14)YMCA Youth Village, Wu Kai Sha
Ecumenical Organizations in HKWCC, CCA, HKWCC, ACISCA, HKCI


Official Inauguration of the Korean delegation10:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
Korean Delegation

Roundtable Discussion with Women ParliamentariansBoys and Girls Club
APWLD, APWN

Book launching3:00pm - 5:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
APWLD, APWN

Trade and Development Symposium HK Exhibition Centre
Int'l Centre for Trade and Sustainable Dev. University of Hong Kong

Fluvial Parade in Victoria Harbour10:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Harbour
KM, SEAFISH, AMC

WTO Protest Banner-Weaving10:00am - 12:00pm
AFA, AsiaDHRRA, APHD
Wednesday, December 14

Forum on Trade and War: Junk WTO! Resist Imperialist Plunder and War!
9:00am - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
BAYAN, ILPS,RESISTUNIFIL-HK

WTO, Food Sovereignty and Alternatives to Globalization
9:00am - 5:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
APNFS, AFA AsiaDHRRA, and ISGN

Solidarity Rally among Asian People's Movement
12:00pm - 3:00pm, Victoria Park
Korean Delegation

Asian People's Voices-Impact of WTO on Asian Communities
9:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
People's Caravan for Justice and Sovereignty

Fair Trade Fair & SymposiumHK Exhibition Centre
Oxfam and INGOOxfam HK

Slow Trade-Changing pace and pattern for the benefit of the people
9:30am - 1:00pm, Knutsford Hotel
The Greens, EFA in the European Parliament

Not in our NAMA! The impact of NAMA negotiations on natural resources and livelihood
2:00pm - 4:30pm, Knutsford Hotel
FoEI, OWINFS

Defending public services, creating jobs and protecting communitiesThematic Morning, Victoria Park
OWINFS

CHINA and the WTO: What to know about the New China and the emerging collective actions for social justice
6:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
FocusGlobalization Monitor

International Day of Protest Against GATS and the Privatization of Basic Services
9:30am, Victoria Park
Jubilee South/APMDD, AMC, MFA, FOCUS, SNR

March to MC6: Deliver Anti-GATS petition and GATS-free notice
11:00am, CEC / Cargo-loading area
Jubilee South/APMDD, AMC, MFA, FOCUS, SNR

Consulate-hopping: Deliver migrants’ petition and GATS-free Notice
1:00pm - 5:00pm, Admirality
Jubilee South/APMDD, AMC, MFA, FOCUS, SNR

WTO and Labour Struggle in Asia
9:00am - 6:00pm, India Club in Jordan
Asia Monitor Resource Centre (AMRC)

Trade and Development SymposiumHK Exhibition Centre
Int'l Centre for Trade and Sustainable Dev. University of Hong Kong

Defending cultural diversity from WTO
5:30pm - 9:00pm, WTC
Int's Network on Cultural Diversity (INCD)

Building Solidarity Amongst Garment, Farm and Other Migrant Workers from San Francisco to Hong Kong
2:00pm - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
San Francisco Bay Area WT-No


Labor's Voice from the South on the WTO and Regional Free Trade Agreements
7:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Hong Kong Confederation Trade Union, Korean Confederation Trade Union

WTO Hong Kong MC6 Collapse and New Generation of FTA in North America
10:00am - 1:00pm, Victoria Park
Citizen's Networks of North America (Canada, US & Mexico)

Thursday, December 15

International Mining Caucus on Mining and WTO
9:00am - 5:00pm, Boys and Girls
Kalikasan-People's Network for the Environment, Cordillera People's Alliance, AGHAM and CEC-Phils


WTO / GLOBALIZATION: Endangering the World for Children (December 15 & 17)
1:00pm - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
ARCSEA, SalinlahiCCA, Migrante


People's Camp on Food Sovereignty: Rural People’s Tribunal on AoA (December 15-17)
9:00am - 1:00pm, Victoria Park
Asian Peasants Coalition, Pesticide Action Network Asia Pacific (PAN-AP) and People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS)APMM, AMCB

People's Camp on Food Sovereignty: Forum on Japan’s Agrarian Reform: Lessons and Challenges (December 15-17)
2:00pm - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
NOUMINREN (Japan Family Farmers Movement), Pesticide Action Network Asia Pacific (PAN-AP) and People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS)APMM, AMCB

People's Workshop on AoAMorning, Victoria Park
APWLD, APC, APWN and AMIHAN

Cultural Festival6:00pm - 9:00pm, Victoria Park
Korean Delegation

Consulate Hopping Protest
10:00am, Indonesian, Philippine, Nepali, Sri Lankan, Thai, & US consulates
Migrante International, Other Migrant GroupsAPMM, AMCB, MIGRANTE

Beijing + 10 Meets WTO +10
9:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
IGTNHK Women Coalition, AMC, MFA

Globalization: Strategies in Responding to Informatization of Work
2:00pm - 6:00pm
CAWHKWWA, HKCTU-Women Committee

Workshop on the GMO case at the WTO
3:00pm - 6:00pm, Victoria Park
Friends of the Earth (FoE)

WTO and FTAs: Complimentary Agents of Neoliberalism The Case Against Bilateral and Regional Free Trade Agreements (FTAs)
3:00pm - 6:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Focus on the Global South, Transnational Institute (TNI)AMC

The G20s Hong Kong challenge: stand for farmers or for agribusiness
6:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Focus on the Global SouthAMC

Women Peasants’ Action against WTOVictoria Park
IMWU, women peasant groups

Economic violence of WTO, also globalization, war and empire9:00am - 5:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Peace for Life

International Youth and Student Conference on Education and EmploymentHong Kong University
ASA, IMCS & WSCF


Quality Public Services for All
4:00pm - 7:00pm, Duke of Windsor Social Service Building
ICFTU, Global Network, GPF, WCLHKCTU

WTO and Labour Struggle in Asia9:00am - 1:00pm, India Club in Jordan
Asia Monitor Resource Centre (AMRC)

The Mexican and Chinese Relationship between competition and cooperation
1:00pm - 3:00pm, Knutsford Hotel
HBF

Building Solidarity Amongst Garment, Farm and Other Migrant Workers from San Francisco to Hong Kong
2:00pm - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
San Francisco Bay Area WT-No


Friday, December 16

Program: Women's Tribunal on the impact of WTO on the world's womenAction: Women's March Against WTO9:00am - 3:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Gabriela, APWLD, APWN and AMIHAN

What Happened to us Sisters? An Encounter9:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
Southeast Asian Women Taking on Globalization and WTO / Women’s March Against Poverty and Globalization

Young Women’s Dialogue with Maturing Women (“Shaping Globalization: Women’s Resistance and Alternatives”)
1:00pm - 3:00pm, Victoria Park
Southeast Asian Women Taking on Globalization and WTO / Women’s March Against Poverty and Globalization

People's Camp on Food Sovereignty: Speak Out of Agricultural Workers, Building Solidarity for their Rights and Welfare (December15-17)Victoria Park
Coalition of Agricultural Workers (CAWI), Pesticide Action Network Asia Pacific (PAN-AP) and People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS)APMM, AMCB

Beyond Free Trade: Food sovereignty and export opportunities. A public hearing of farmers voices in the framework of the EcoFair Trade Dialogue10:00am - 12:30pm, Knutsford Hotel
HBF Wuppertal Institute Misereor

Winners and losers: Big business against women, workers and the environment
Thematic Morning, Victoria Park
OWINFS

Fair Trade Fair & SymposiumHK Exhibition Centre
Oxfam and INGOOxfam HK

Prospect for the joint campaign in Asia Pacific against war and imperialist globalization1:00pm - 6:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
AWC

EU Trade Policies: Implications for gender equality, development and women's rights.3:00pm - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
Women in Development Europe (WIDE)

World Social Forum meeting6:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
WSF Asia

Not in my NAMA! The impact of NAMA on natural resources and livelihood12:00pm - 3:00pm, Victoria Park
Friends of the Earth International (FoEI)

International Youth and Student Conference on Education and Employment10:00am - 6:00pm, Hong Kong University
ASA, IMCS & WSCFASA, WSCF

Trade and Development Symposium HK Exhibition Centre
Int'l Centre for Trade and Sustainable Dev. University of Hong Kong

Migrants and Mode 411:00am - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
AFCS/NNIRR

Women March Against WTO9:00am - 3:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
People's Caravan for Justice and Sovereignty

Women take on the WTO: Women's Resistance to Corporate Hijack of Food and Health3:00pm - 6:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Diverse Women for Diversity

Exploring Global Civil Society's Dynamics in WTO governance 10:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
Chaire de recherche du Canada en Mondialisation, Citoyenneté et Démocratie (Chaire MCD)

Winners and Losers: Big Business against Women, Workers and the Environment12:00pm - 3:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Pacific Institute

Experiences of resistance against free trade in Asia and the Americas2:00pm - 6:00pm, Victoria Park
Hemispheric Social Alliance
Saturday, December 17

WTO / GLOBALIZATION: Endangering the World for Children (December 15 & 17)Victoria Park
ARCSEA SalinlahiCCA, Migrante

Rice Festival Mobile Cultural Performances (December 11-18)Victoria Park & other locations to be announced
PANAP Save Our Rice Campaign

People's Camp on Food Sovereignty: Asian Workshop on TRIPS: Defending Farmers’ Rights against Patents on Life – Organised by (December15-17)9:00am - 6:00pm, Victoria Park
Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), Magsasaka at Siyentista para sa Pag-unlad ng Agrikultura (MASIPAG), No Patents on Life (NPOL)-Asia and Asian Peasant Coalition (APC)PAN-AP,PCFS, AMCB, APMM

People's Camp on Food Sovereignty: Asian Action to Stop! GM Rice (December15-17)10:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
No-GMO Coalition Japan, PAN-AP, PCFS AMCB, APMM

People's Camp on Food Sovereignty: Launch of Case Studies on the Impact of AFTA on Food Security in Asian Countries (December15-17)2:00pm - 5:00pm, Victoria Park
South East Asian Council for Food Security and Fair Trade, PAN-AP, PCFS AMCB, APMM

Asian Women Press Conference 9:00am - 11:00am, Boys and Girls Club
APWLD

The Rights Approach for gender equality, environment and development: Recapturing Policy coherence around trade9:30am - 12:00pm, Knutsford Hotel
HBF IGTN

Democratization of decision making processes regarding international trade agreements - the Israel scenario2:00pm - 3:00pm, Knutsford Hotel
FoEME

Workshop on GM Rice9:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
No GMO Campaign

Asian Farmers' Assembly, privatization of services, FTAs in Asia, GMO issues12:30pm - 3:30pm, Victoria Park
No WTO Coalition in Japan

Asian People's Caravan Journey Open Bus TopLate morning, Victoria Park --> Sham Shui Po
People's Caravan for Justice and Sovereignty 2005

Trade: war by other meansWhat are the alternatives to the WTO?Thematic Morning, Victoria Park
OWINFS

War and Trade: Iraq: Ground Zero of Globalization and War6:00pm - 10:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
FocusAMC

Solidarity Among Migrants and Peasants Against AoA and WTO9:00am - 6:00pm, Victoria Park
Institute for Global Justice (IGJ), peasant groups, IMWU, KOTKIHO, AMC, CMR

Trade and Development SymposiumHK Exhibition Centre
Int'l Centre for Trade and Sustainable Dev. University of Hong Kong

Forum/Speak-Out on Globalization, WTO and Forced Migrantion1:00pm - 6:00pm, Victoria Park
ILPS International, Study Commission for Migrants, Refugees and Displaced Peoples', Migrante InternationalAPMM, AMCB

Cultural Solidarity Night for International Migrants' Day 6:00pm - 10:00pm, Victoria Park
ILPS International, Study Commission for Migrants, Refugees and Displaced Peoples', Migrante InternationalAPMM, AMCB

Resisting Economic Partnership Agreements in Africa and the Caribbean2:00pm - 6:00pm, Victoria Park
Hemispheric Social Alliance, Transnational Institute

Health of Migrant Workers10:00am - 12:00pm, Victoria Park
CARAM

Big Concert6:00pm - 10:00pm, Victoria Park or Southorn Park
KM, SEAFISH
Sunday, December 18

Closing March/Rally
HKPA


Korean Delegation Closing RallyAfter HKPA Rally
Korean Delegation

International Migrants Day / Equal Pay for Equal Work campaign
10:00am, Chater Road (Central)
AMC, CMR, FDHGU, MFA, FOCUS, Jubilee South, ADWU

‘Rock Against the Round’ Concert / Cultural Solidarity Against WTO
5:00pm - 10:00pm, Chater Road (Central)
AMC, CMR, FDHGU, MFA, FOCUS, Jubilee South, ADWU

Beyond WTO and AoA: Alternative Rules of Agriculture3:00pm - 6:00pm, Boys and Girls Club
Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology

International Migrants Day / Equal Pay for Equal Work Campaign
8:00am, Victoria Park
Institute for Global Justice (IGJ), IMWU, KOTKIHO, CMR, MFA, AMC

International Solidarity / “Rock Against the Round” / Concert Against WTO
5:00pm - 10:00pm, Victoria Park
Institute for Global Justice (IGJ), IMWU, KOTKIHO, CMR, MFA, AMC

More info:
Bayarea WT-no!
http://daga.dhs.org/hkpa/

2 comments:

rich said...

While on one level it may be heartening to see that some of our young people are getting engaged politically, on another level it's sad to see so many people -- all over the world -- rallying *against* their own benefit.

We do want to see Free Trade applied evenly and universally. But make no mistke -- Free Trade benefits EVERYBODY, in the end. It's a win-win all 'round.

Decrying the loss of garment manufacture in San Francisco is akin to the lament of the decline of the buggy whip factories as the automobile gained in popularity. Let go. Let go of the past, and focus your energy on preparing for what's next.

And it's also sad -- though not surprising -- that teaching basic economics is something that's essentially ignored by San Francisco schools.

We talk about this pretty regularly over at The Golden Gate:
http://thegoldengate.net/2005/09/05/basic-economics-wherefore-art-thou

We are San Franciscans and we will be working -- real real hard -- for more freedom (market) based solutions in all aspects of our City's life. Part of that is fostering the teaching liberty and solid economics in our schools.

Some examples:

http://tinyurl.com/bvovc

http://tinyurl.com/c6ym4

Freedom: everybody wins.

~rich

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