Monday, March 22, 2010

Union Prayer

Addie Wyatt, former officer of the United Food and Commercial Workers, used to start a meeting with this union prayer.

"Each of us is a link in this great union chain that stretches around the world. I will try every day to keep my link, united, active and strong."

Addie L. Wyatt (1924-)

Labor leader, civil rights pioneer, pastor

The first female board member of the United Packinghouse Food and Alliance Workers Union, Addie L. Wyatt was elected vice president of Local 56 in 1953. During her 30-year career as a labor leader Wyatt fought for equality as a campaigner for women's rights in the workplace and as an active protester alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the early 1960s. She served as a member of President John F. Kennedy's Commission on the Status of Women and in 1976 became the first black woman labor leader of an international union when she was elected international vice president of the newly merged United Food and Commercial Workers International Union. A former Time magazine woman of the year (1975), Wyatt was inducted to the Civil Rights Walk of Fame in Atlanta, Georgia, in 2005.

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