Monday, April 7, 2014

Nurses rally around country for Robin Hood tax on anniversary of MLK's death

Our sisters (and brothers) at National Nurses United honored Dr. Martin Luther King's memory on Friday by rallying around the country for a tax on Wall Street.
Rallying for the Robin Hood tax in Chicago

Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., kicked off the rally in Washington, D.C., one of 24. Ellison is sponsoring a bill that would impose a sales tax on Wall Street speculative trading. He calls it 'The Inclusive Prosperity Act.' You might know it as the Robin Hood Tax. Ellison said it would create hundreds of billions of dollars a year for communities in need. The bill would also discourage the high-frequency trading that rigs the system in favor of insiders and against small investors.

People sometimes forget Dr. King died in the cause of economic justice -- supporting Memphis sanitation workers during a strike. Friday was the anniversary of his assassination.

The nurses' blog about their rallies around the country tells us:
Rev. Rodney Sadler, Moral Monday leader, speaking in DC
Vigils to honor Dr. King’s legacy, and call for enactment of HR 1579 were also held at Congressional offices in 24 cities from coast to coast, and letters of support delivered to Congress members at 44 other offices this day as well. 
In Washington, Bill Lucy, president emeritus of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists, who was with King in April, 1968, stood today outside the Capitol with Ellison remembering King and calling for passage of the Ellison Bill.   
"The Inclusive Prosperity Act really is a vehicle to continue the work of Martin Luther King Jr.," said Lucy.  "The sanitation workers of Memphis wanted decency and dignity," he remembered.   "Keith Ellison wants economic fairness.  I applaud him."
There's a reason nurses are the ones who've taken up this cause: They view America as their patient, according to Sandy Falwell, RN, a national vice president of National Nurses United. She said,
Registered nurses are on the front lines of this calamity as many of the patients we care for in hospitals around the country are coming to us with multiple illnesses aggravated by poverty and a delay in seeking care because they simply cannot afford it. They have to choose to eat or get health care. Too many people in this country are forced to choose whether to take medications or try to pay their rent, and in a country such as ours with such tremendous wealth, this is unconscionable.