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Asian American and Pacific Islander Contributions to the Labor Movement

In the month of May we celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) heritage, a diverse community that represents over 30 countries. Share My Lesson has a curriculum toolkit for PreK-12 educators. Today, AAPI workers can be found across most industries in the United States as well in our labor movement continuing the fight for workers’ rights.  Activists like Philip Vera Cruz, a Filipino labor organizer who helped form the United Farm Workers Union, and May Chen, an organizer and immigrant activist who helped to found the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), make up the diversity of the AAPI labor movement. Here in Detroit, Grace Lee Boggs was a longtime leader in the labor and civil rights movements whose legacy is carried on in part by the teachers and staff at the Boggs School, who are proud members of the Michigan Alliance of Charter Teachers & Staff, AFT Local 6482.  

APALA was formed in 1992, bringing together the diverse body of AAPI workers in solidarity within the AFL-CIO to advance worker, immigrant, and civil rights. If you are interested in getting involved with Michigan’s APALA chapter, contact AFT Michigan’s Internal Organizing & Leadership Development Coordinator Meenakshi Mukherjee at

AFT Telephone Town Hall on COVID-19

Since President Biden took office, Americans have had access to free COVID-19 vaccines, booster shots, treatments, tests and protective equipment such as masks. This was made possible as a result of bipartisan support for these lifesaving tools. But as COVID-19 persists, and as we return more and more to our pre-pandemic routines, what should we be doing to keep ourselves, our families and our communities safe, as we continue reopening the economy, schools, camps and other activities and deal with new surges and variants?

Please join AFT President Randi Weingarten, White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator and Counselor to the President Dr. Ashish Jha, and other union members and leaders to discuss both where we are and what we collectively need to do to help protect our students, families, patients, members and communities in schools, hospitals, cities, towns and workplaces across the country.

Date: Thursday, May 5

Time: 6:45 p.m. Eastern

RSVP to join

Contribute to the AFT Michigan PAC Today

AFT Michigan fights for our members, students and communities all year round and we need your help. Can you donate $1 a week to aid us in this fight? Please visit the AFT Michigan website to contribute and make a big difference in protecting public education and building a better Michigan future! 

Upcoming Union Building Workshops

Unemployment Workshop

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. 

Professional Development

AFT Michigan 

Supporting Learners to Cope After a Traumatic Event(s)

Saturday, May 7, 2022

8:30 am – 4:30 pm

In the wake of several traumatic events such as the ongoing COVID 19 Pandemic and the Ukraine War, students may experience fear, worry, and sadness. This workshop will provide strategies for educators to help learners through their fears and grief, and prevent long term negative effects academically and emotionally.

Click here to register:

In solidarity, 

David Hecker


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