Help Us Cover Unions Fighting for Gun Control

Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers members protest in Pittsburgh for gun control with Parkland Survivor David Hoggs (Pennsylvania Federation of Teachers)

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For years, the while male-dominated leadership of organized labor unions has been loath to take on the issue of gun control. However, things are starting to change. As mass shootings target union members employed in schools, grocery stores, and public transit, some unions are fighting back and starting to change the conversation around gun control in the US. 

Much like the Black Lives Matter protests, which inspired over 500 walkouts in the month following the death of George Floyd, Payday Report believes that growing momentum among students and teachers for gun control could lead to even more protests. 

Last week, Payday reported that groups responding to an online call for action walked out at over 200 schools across the US, according to Everytown for Gun Safety. 

Earlier this year, Payday covered how teachers in both Erie and DC went on strike over the need to curb gun violence. Unions like the American Federation of Teachers are working to mobilize protests against guns nationwide, and more unions are expected to join them. Today, the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers marched for gun control with Parkland survivor David Hoggs.

“Gun violence is cancer, and it’s one that none of us should tolerate for one single moment longer,” said AFT President Randi Weingarten, whose union has lost many members to gun violence. “We have made a choice to let this continue, and we can make a choice to finally do something—do anything—to put a stop to this madness.”

The conversation about gun control is changing within the labor movement, and with your help Payday Report can be part of that change. 

Payday has shown a proven ability to impact the conversation on gun control. Our work covering the strike wave has been praised by The Washington Post, which cited our work tracking strikes in a front-page cover story. The New York Times described us as a publication with “new energy.” PBS American Portrait profiled our work tracking the strike wave, and Esquire described our work as “invaluable.”

Our work with CNN’s W. Kamau Bell on Tree of Life Synagogue massacre and racism in Pittsburgh was also nominated for an Emmy. We believe that once again, we will be major influencers on the national conversations about gun control with the labor movement, but we need your support to do it.

Donate today to help us cover how unions are fighting back against guns. Please, if you can, sign up as one of our 691 recurring donors. 

Together, we can change the conversation about guns within the labor movement. 

Thanks again for all the support. 

Love & Solidarity, 

Melk 

About the Author

Mike Elk
A protege of Bill Greider, Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered Lula & the drug war in Brasil and spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian. In 2016, he used his NLRB settlement from being fired illegally for union organizing at Politico to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. The son of retired United Electrical Workers (UE) Director of Organization Gene Elk, he was once described as an "abrasive gadfly" by the New York Times for his role in exposing sexual misconduct in the labor movement. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh. Email: [email protected]

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