Economic justice

The “poor” march for economic justice

New Yorkers without means used what they had to march on Wall Street.

The New York Poor People’s Campaign (NYPPC) marched to Wall Street starting at the Museum of the American Indian, past the New York Stock Exchange and ending at Trinity Church Wall Street where several people spoke about the plight of voiceless and what needs to be done politically to make things right.

“We live in a time of great suffering and crisis,” Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign, said at the mass meeting. “And a lot of what’s going on doesn’t make sense. We are throwing away more food than is needed to feed every man, woman and child in this country… We have brokers here on Wall Street bidding on food prices as families in this country and around the world worldwide are facing some of the highest food prices in history. !

“But it doesn’t have to be that way,” Reverend Dr. Theoharis said.

The march was part of a ‘National Campaign of the Poor’ which aims to use ‘grassroots community and religious leaders, organizations and movements’ to fight systemic racism, poverty, environmental issues and overreliance on towards the army which engages in a perpetual war with some entity or nation.

Representatives from Vermont, Rhode Island and Massachusetts joined the march as part of the “Assembly of the Masses Poor and Low-Wage Workers and Moral March on Washington and to the Polls.” The groups want to hit the nation’s capital on June 18.

“I’m worried about my son. I’m worried he can’t find a living wage,” said Kelly Smith, one of three NYPPC presidents. valued less than my white skin. And I could worry and worry and worry and wring my hands. Or I could get up. I could talk. I could fight.

Pamela Poniatowski, tri-president of the Rhode Island Poor People’s Campaign, said she was unaware of the number of households with disabled members living below the poverty line according to the Annual Compendium of Disability Statistics via the Administration for Community Living’s National Institute on Disability. Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (funded by the federal government), people with disabilities live in poverty more than twice the rate of people without disabilities (27.8% to 11.9% respectively), which gave him reason to more to show up and express their displeasure with the way things are.

“There are still millions of people waiting for accommodation, look around,” Poniatowski said. “We can see them in every state. It’s heartbreaking and there are 140 million people just one emergency away from losing everything. The waiting list for housing anywhere is years long. What are we supposed to do during these years? »

“You have a mess,” Bishop William J. Barber added. “This kind of politics pits us against each other, blames the poor for their poverty even though we live in the midst of plenty. And we know that poverty is not so much a personal choice as a political consequence of policies. We have the resources to meet everyone’s needs.

“The one thing we don’t have enough of is the moral conscience and the will to do the right thing. And that’s our job – to change the moral narrative of this nation.