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Occupy Wall Street and NH Offshoots Act Up on May Day

May 1, 2012

CONCORD, N.H. - "Don't go to work. Don't go to school. Don't shop. Take to the streets!" That's the rallying cry for what's called "A Day Without the 99 Percent" by the Occupy Wall Street movement (OWS). Today, on May Day, there will be teach-ins, marches and rallies all across New England.

Ken Roos, SEIU local 1984 vice-president, says it's a good thing the movement is getting back into action, because the opposition has not been resting. He says they used the winter months to employ divide-and-conquer tactics against those who have been allied with the Occupy Movement.

"You know they'll blame the unions, they'll blame the women, they'll blame minorities; but we all need to stand together strong, so that working families are successful and aim for the goal of the American Dream."

Roos says a prime example of this tactic is the way some conservative groups have tried to blame unions for prolonging the recession.

Protester Aaron Bornstein says that, while some people thought Occupy was "hibernating" during the winter, it was at work forging alliances with labor, students and, especially, with immigrants' rights groups.

"It focuses on this idea of 'A Day Without the 99 Percent,' which is an homage to our friends in the immigrant-rights movement who really resuscitated May Day in this country with their 2006 'Day Without An Immigrant,' where they really stood up and showed people 'What it's like to not have us.'"

In New York City, labor unions are promising to bring at least 12,000 people to the main Union Square rally. Other marches, stepping off from different locales, will converge there and all will march from there, in late afternoon, down past the bull statue near Wall Street.

Locally, the biggest event will happen on Saturday in Greeley Park when local unions and their supporters will hold their "Solid as Granite" Rally in Nashua.

For information on actions in your city: occupywallst.org.


Mike Clifford/Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - NH