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Activists Tell Congress: Keep Your Promise to Mine Workers


CWA President Chris Shelton and CWAers rally at the U.S. Capitol.

CWA President Chris Shelton and about 50 CWAers joined more than a thousand members of the United Mine Workers Union and other union activists at a Capitol Hill rally today, calling on Congress to keep America's promise to thousands of retired miners and spouses. Mine workers and supporters came from several states, traveling by bus from Kentucky, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and more, to send a message to Congress: keep America's promise to us by funding the UMWA pension fund.

The crowd heard from a bipartisan group of lawmakers who pledged to fight hard for S. 1714 and H.R. 2403, calling the legislation "a matter of life and death for current and retired miners and their families."

After the rally, UMWA members and supporters visited every Senator and many Members of Congress, calling on them to stand up for the working families who stand with this country every day. The Senate Finance Committee is expected to vote on the bill on Sept. 14.

Seventy years ago, President Truman promised coal miners that they would have lifetime retirement benefits, in recognition of the very dangerous and too often deadly work that they do. Coal miners work in an extraordinarily challenging work environment, suffering much higher than normal rates of crippling injuries and illnesses. That promise has been acknowledged by the U.S. Congress in past decades, and today it's critical that the government acts to protect the retirement and health care security of 100,000 or more mine workers and families.

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Mine workers and supporters call on the government to keep its promise.