Hi Congregation! Mike and I, as well as members of Old First, are organizers with the hotel, food service and casino workers’ union UNITE HERE in Philly. I am reaching out today asking for help with an organizing challenge we have.
Earlene Bly is an African-American union housekeeper who has been volunteer organizing on our nonunion hotel organizing campaigns for the past year. She’s finally able to be more independent and is currently on a union leave of absence from her hotel (the Wyndham Hotel down the street from our church at 4th and Arch) for the purposes of organizing, but she’s really slowed down by not having a car. (I’m including her story below, so you can hear about her in her own words.)
We’ve been crowdfunding for her to raise money for a car, and she’s on her way to raising about $2000. We are now looking for anyone who might have a car that they are looking to sell that might be affordable for her (or knows of someone who might).
Another option could be if you or someone you know might be looking to donate a car for tax purposes, we may be able to work out something for you to get the full value of the car as a tax-deductible contribution.
If you are interested in helping in any way, see me at church (or get my contact info. from REALM or the church office!) Now more than ever we need more people organizing in their communities! Thanks in advance for any help you may be able to give!
Help me make my vision a reality!
My name is Earlene, and I am the mother of 3 beautiful daughters and grandmother to 8 very beautiful grandchildren in my home city of Philadelphia. I am also a room attendant at the Wyndham Hotel where I am a Volunteer Organizer for my Union, UNITE HERE LOCAL 274.
I just turned 50 years old, and I recently acquired my first Driver’s License. I’m so very proud of myself for finally getting it at this late stage in my life.Now to the reason I’m telling you all this. Not only do I LOVE being a mother & grandmother, but I also LOVE being a Volunteer Organizer! I truly believe with all my heart that this is what I was meant to do with my life. Not everyone knows their purpose in life, but I found mine and it’s helping people! Helping them to realize their worth, their rights, and know what they deserve and are entitled to in their workplaces and in their communities.
My vision for my Union and my city is to see every worker in our hotels, airport, stadiums, and casinos UNIONIZED with hundreds of Volunteer Organizers like myself out there fighting the fight. I want my fellow co-workers around the city to use the power of our voices to demand the respect we deserve from our bosses at work and the leaders of this city.
To make my vision a reality, I need to be mobile to get around the city and recruit the next group of union leaders. I need to buy a car to go with my new driver’s license.
I have a few hundred dollars saved, but it is hard as a single parent with my teenager and granddaughter living with me. I have a goal of raising $2000 and any contribution – $5, $20, $50 – will be greatly appreciated and will help me make my vision a reality. Thank you for thinking about me.