In Tuesday’s (9/6) Detroit News, Candice Williams writes, “Organized labor took center stage in downtown Detroit this morning as thousands took part in the city’s annual Labor Day Parade with leaders calling on their members to keep fighting despite record high unemployment and a lingering recession. More than a dozen musicians with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, who’ve been locked in a contract dispute with orchestra management, were joined by national labor leaders such as AFL-CIO president Arlene Holt Baker at this year’s parade. The Rev. Jesse Jackson, Congressman John Dingell and Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Virg Bernero were also there. … The parade started with a short performance by about15 DSO musicians and local union musicians performing in front of Orchestra Hall. The musicians have been without a contract since Aug. 29. … Today’s parade comes at a challenging time for labor groups across Metro Detroit and the nation. The region remains mired in a recession with a 13.1 percent unemployment rate and union membership is declining. The United Auto Workers lost 76,000 members last year alone and is now at its lowest level since after World War II with roughly 355,000 members.”

Posted September 7, 2010