Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Workers to the Top of the Agenda
Arab & Jewish Workers to march together on May Day
WAC-Ma'an organizes march in Tel Aviv

The Workers Advice Center (WAC-Ma'an) has organized a march for workers’ rights under the title “Workers to the top of the Agenda,” in honor of the First of May. Arab and Jewish workers will gather at the corner of Rothschild and Sheinkin at 17:00 on May 1. They will be joined by unions and other organizations that are active in defending workers’ rights. They will then march to Tel Aviv's Cinematheque Plaza, where they will hold an assembly at 18:00. The following speakers will address the group:

For WAC: Assaf Adiv and Asma Agbarieh; for the Hotline for Migrant Workers: Ami Saar; for Kav LaOved: Roy Wagner; for Tel Aviv University Legal Aid Clinic: Attorney Itai Swirsky, Dr. Itzhak Saporta. WAC's Wafa Tyara will speak in a special ceremony to commend those who contributed during the past year to the struggle of organizing the working class. Between speeches the following musicians will perform: Amir Lev, Dan Toren, Yasmin Even, Natan Slor, and Yoel Ben Simhon.

An international delegation of labor unions will also be present. This delegation, invited by WAC, is currently visiting Israel and Palestine. Junya Lek Yimprasert from the Thai union, TLC, will take the stage.

To mark May Day, WAC has cooperated with poets and editors of cultural publications to issue an anthology of class-conscious poems entitled “Red.” Magazines joining WAC in this publication are Etgar, a political and cultural magazine; Ma’ayan, a poetry magazine; and Hakivun Mizrah.

Some of the poets read at a poetry evening in Kufr Qara on April 27. The encounter between Arab and Jewish poets, on the one hand, and 60 farm and construction workers from WAC on the other, was exciting and unique. Among the poets in the anthology are: Aiman Kamel Agbarieh, Samiah el Kasem, Sheli Elkayam, Dvorah Amir, Ro’i Arad, Erez Biton, Galit Wasker, Nidaa Khoury, Oded Karmeli Itzhak Laor, Amir Lev, Gilad Meiri, Itai Meirson, Hussein Mahaneh, Sami Mahaneh, Fairuk Mussi, Marwan Makhol, Mirsol (Mira Hevroni), Efrat Mishori, Salman Matzalkha, Nir Nader, Amit Neufeld, Eitan Glas Nahmias, Tal Nitzan, Amir Naaman, Naval Nafaa, Yehezkiel Nefshi, Roni Sumak, Pete Seeger, Yehoshua Simon, Naif Salim, Debbie Saar, Braha Sari, Turki Amer , Taha Muhammad Ali, Tzvi Atsmon, Oded Peled, Dalia Pelah, Aharon Shabtai, Yaara Shkhori, Bashir Shalesh, Matti Schmauluf, Ester Shkelim, Dan Toren.

At the May Day assembly in the Cinematheque Plaza, there will also be an exhibit of art and poetry, including all works of art published till now in YNet’s weekly column Beit Ha’am (Ynet is the website of the Ydiout Ahronot daily). This weekly column presents a work of art beside a poem addressing current reality. The Ynet column and the May Day gallery are sponsored by WAC and Etgar magazine.


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