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    "The fight is never about grapes or lettuce. It is always about people."
    Cesar Chavez




    :: Thursday, June 01, 2006 ::

    GETTING A UNION CARD - Philadelphia Daily News
    This agreement has taken years to complete. Talks began in 2002. And we suspect Nevel's hints that unions might lose millions of dollars in contracts on the district's $2 billion school construction and renovation boom helped convince the trades council to come around.

    However, all this talk about creating an economic passport for school district kids and a growing pool of resources for the trade unions will remain just that - talk - unless the trades council takes seriously this mandate to open its selective ranks.

    The history of the skilled building trades in this city - electricians, carpenters, bricklayers, plumbers - is bereft of minority representation.

    Though the lower-paid laborer unions have adequate minority representation, the more lucrative skill trades - in a city that's 43 percent black - are overwhelmingly white.
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