Thursday, June 13, 2013

On the road with Teamster Rick Smith talking labor

Teamster and radio show host Rick Smith hit the highway June 10 on a quest to meet regular union people like himself. Since then, he's traveled through West Virginia, Tennessee and Arkansas talking with workers and discussing the labor movement's history and future. The tour will take him all the way to the West Coast and back to his home in Pennsylvania before it ends July 5.

Tonight, Rick's RV pulls into Dallas, the latest stop of The People's Tour for America. He and the crew will be talking with Teamster historian Karin Jones as well as several retired union members about activism in the South and how trucking has changed. In addition, Rick will chat with local members from BLET and the Teamsters on why young people need to learn about the labor movement and organize today.

You can listen to the show live here beginning at 9 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or download the stitcher app on your phone. You can also download the podcast at a later date from here.

Rick outside of Teamsters Local 667 in Memphis. 
Already on his tour, Rick has challenged the conventional wisdom that there is no union presence in the South. He learned, for example, that the Highlander Research and Education Center in Knoxville, Tenn. began training community members about labor and civil rights organizing more 70 years ago. He's also gotten the flavor of the union movement in Memphis.

Follow Rick's adventures here as he documents the challenges facing the nation's middle class families. Stay safe Brother!