Minneapolis marches on May Day
Minneapolis, MN – More than 300 demonstrators gathered on May 1 to march in Minneapolis for International Workers Day. The marchers gathered at noon near the Minneapolis Adult Education Center on Lake Street, in honor of the historic educators’ strike that took place this March.
Labor rights activists David Richard Gilbert Pederson, Kai Shelley, Sophie Brean, and Greta Callahan, and immigrant rights activists Delfina Rojas and Pablo Tapia kicked off the march with speeches that highlighted the recent local labor struggles and immigrant rights struggles.
Marchers were joined by community members driving homemade floats and decorated cars, and members of the community joined the marchers as they proceeded down Lake Street to the May Day Street Festival at the Four Directions Family Center.
After the two-year hiatus of Minneapolis’ customary May Day parade, this was an art-filled political and cultural festival hosted by Kalpulli KetzalCoatlicue with critical support from MIRAC, El Colegio high school, and Four Directions’ Family Partnership.
The event was initiated by Minnesota Workers United (MWU), Asamblea de Derechos Civiles, and the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAC); and co-hosted by several labor unions: AFSCME Locals 34, 2822, 3800, and 3937, MFT 59, SEIU Local 26 and SEIU Healthcare MN, OPEIU Local 12.
The Street Festival highlighted the militant and internationalist spirit of International Workers Day, with tabling by dozens of local rights groups. Speakers echoed the demands of the march, emphasizing both immigrant rights – an end to border militarization, legalization for all, and an end to violence against immigrants – and workers’ rights; an end to police brutality; and an end to imperialism and military aggression.