“Take it back. Take it back,” chanted the nurses in reference to the damage inflicted on communities where nurses live and work as rising unemployment, foreclosures, loss of health benefits and access, and damaged infrastructure have turned dreams into nightmares few in the working class can escape.
Musicians played as the nurses streamed into the square across from the banking center in San Francisco, and a stretch limo arrived shortly afterwards with a team of costumed players representing Wall Street’s elite and also a couple of players acting like members of Congress beholden to those elites.
The nurses watched a skit during which Lady Liberty arrived to try to challenge the Wall Street power brokers before the skit and Liberty’s defender turned their attention to Main Street and the suffering many are experiencing all over America. The nurses are part of the 170,000 member strong National Nurses United, the nation’s largest professional nursing union.
The union has launched a coast-to-coast campaign with the call for a financial transaction tax sufficient enough to bring $350 billion into the nation’s public coffers along with the much more significant and related financial ripples into the economy which would restore job growth and help rebuild communities.
The rally in San Francisco followed a national day of action on September 1, 2011, when nurses in more than 60 cities held sit-ins, soup kitchens, speak-outs and other events in support of the FTT and their broader Main Street Contract for America. The September 1st actions were preceded by rallies on Wall Street in New York City and outside the U.S. Chamber of Commerce building in Washington, D.C., both in June 2011.
The nurses are in convention this week and have so far welcomed California Governor Jerry Brown and Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom.
Tomorrow they will welcome Academy Award winning filmmaker Michael Moore to address the membership and author of the newly released memoir, “Here Comes Trouble.” Find out more at nationalnursesunited.org
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