From the Desk of the President (April, 2015)


Thank you so much to all your kind words of support and sympathy on the loss of my younger sister, Cille (Lucille), last month. She was a very strong woman and I admired her strength and tenacity so much. In spite of being misdiagnosed several times and having to go through the ups & downs of trying drugs that did not work, she never gave up on living life. When those drugs finally betrayed her kidneys and she had to begin dialysis, she never gave up on living life as normally as possible. When she almost died last year from pneumonia, she did not give up. She was very artistic and that helped her to deal with the hand life gave her. Our family misses her – especially her auctioneer style of talking. When we talked, we learned a lot from every-thing she had to share even though it would take us several hours after those phone calls to process everything!!

March 24th marked the kick- off day to Council 5’s Month of Service. That month will culminate in a Day of Action, Celebration and Service on Saturday, April 25th. We will meet at the Martin Luther King Center, 270 N. Kent St, St Paul MN by 10:00 am for a spring clean-up of the Rondo neighbor-hood. This action honors the sacrifices made by the 1968 Memphis sanitation workers. This keeps alive our union’s legacy with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. of gaining respect and rights for all workers. The clean-up is followed by a meal at 12:30 PM and ends with a celebration at 1:00 PM. The keynote speaker will be AFSCME’s Bill Lucy, who helped the Mem-phis sanitation workers in their fight to organize. The day will end wrap up with the movie, “At the River I Stand” which documents the Dr. King’s last days in Memphis as he acted to settle the sanitation workers strike.

Local 34 has scheduled two volunteer events as our part in the month of service. Please con-tact Kay Powell or me, via email, to sign up to participate. We will have t-shirts to wear that have “I Am A Man” to honor the Memphis sanitation workers as we work on our projects to benefit others. Your children can help – see age limits by the events.

The first event is at Bridging-Roseville, 1633 Terrace Drive, Roseville MN on Saturday, April 18, 2015 from 9:00 – noon. We are looking for 10 – 15 volunteers. We will be providing general warehouse assistance: loading and unloading trucks, sorting through donated goods, rolling linens and re-stocking shelves. Note: All volunteers must be 14 or older.

The second event is at Second Harvest, 6325 Sandburg Rd, Suite 1700, Golden Valley MN, on Tuesday, May 12, 2015 from 6:00 – 8:00 PM. We will pack food at the ware-house. You must be over 8 to participate. We need 15 volunteers for this event.

Remember to vote in our Local 34 Member-at-Large officer election. Ballots are sent to you via US mail on or about March 30, 2015. You have until April 24, 2015, to complete the ballot and put it in the mail. Ballots post-marked after April 27, 2015 cannot be accepted. The members running for the office are, in alphabetical or-der, Angel Alexander, Mohamed Falag, Kenneth W. Garnier and Sharon Streeter.

Finally, moving ahead to next month, May 1st is International Worker’s Day. Local 34 is celebrating this day with informational sessions at various work sites. Please keep your eyes open for the fliers with notices of those sites and times.  Jean