Writers Guild East Joins Occupy Wall Street March

By Jason Boog Comment

The Writers Guild of America East (WGAE) joined scores of other unions and community groups in a New York City demonstration yesterday. Do you think more writers should join the growing Occupy Wall Street movement?

UPDATE: Writers Guild of America East executive director Lowell Peterson had this comment after the march: “Several dozen WGAE people joined yesterday’s rally and march.  We get it: Occupy Wall Street is careful not to focus on policy or legislative specifics precisely because it seeks to build a broad protest movement.  Like many unions, we do have a specific agenda, but it’s okay with us to march in solidarity with other groups and individuals who might have a different focus and different ideas.  No one knows yet where this will lead, but I think there is a consensus that the financial heavyweights have done a pretty awful job with the economy, and have too much influence over our government, and that it’s time to strengthen the countervailing force of working people, students, writers and artists, and others.”

The solidarity march moved from Foley Square to the Financial District in New York City. In addition, the outdoor Occupy New York library is looking for donations and volunteers. They also need tarps and boxes to protect the books in this growing library at the protest site.

Here’s more from the library blog: “We need books of resistance and people’s history. We need economics and finance books. We need contemporary philosophy and ecology. We need DIY books.  We especially need non-English books and materials for low literacy readers. Print outs of free stuff from the web are valuable to us– I personally handed out at least two copies of Citizens United on Saturday before the march. Also, we’re a free lending library operating on the honors system, so our materials come and go rather rapidly; multiple copies are always welcome. On that note, we need as many copies of “A People’s History of the United States” by Zinn as possible. We simply can’t keep a copy in stock as there are so many people who want to read it.”

Writers Guild of America East executive director Lowell Peterson had this comment before the march: “We are proud to join the Occupy Wall Street protests to hold Wall Street and corporate America accountable for the financial crisis and growing economic inequality in our country.  Occupy Wall Street shows that people don’t have to sit on the sidelines.  Like the other labor unions that are participating in these protests, WGAE advocates on behalf of its members to insure they receive appropriate compensation and benefits.  No union can do this in a vacuum.  The economic crisis affects everyone.”

If you want to find out more, we’ve collected a number of union and guild resources for writers.

Here is the long list of participants in the solidarity march yesterday.

  • United NY
  • Strong Economy for All Coalition
  • Working Families Party
  • TWU Local 100
  • SEIU 1199
  • CWA 1109
  • Communications Workers of America
  • CWA Local 1180
  • United Auto Workers
  • United Federation of Teachers
  • Professional Staff Congress – CUNY
  • National Nurses United
  • Writers Guild East
  • Community Voices Heard
  • Alliance for Quality Education
  • New York Communities for Change
  • Coalition for the Homeless
  • Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project (NEDAP)
  • The Job Party
  • NYC Coalition for Educational Justice
  • The Mirabal Sisters Cultural and Community Center
  • The New Deal for New York Campaign
  • National People’s Action
  • Human Services Council
  • Labor-Religion Coalition of New York State
  • Citizen Action of NY
  • MoveOn.org
  • Common Cause NY
  • New Bottom Line
  • 350.org
  • Tenants & Neighbors
  • Democracy for NYC
  • Resource Generation
  • Tenants PAC
  • Teachers Unite