CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Empire State labor leaders put on a brave face this morning at a New York State delegation breakfast at the Democratic National Convention, which is being held in a right-to-work state where few of the workers at the hotel and other convention facilities are unionized.
Asked if would have preferred that the convention be held in a state more friendly to unions, Stuart Appelbaum, president of the 100,000-member Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, said: "I believe the news of this convention is America coming together. The Democratic Party is not going to ignore our workers in any part of the country."
Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers in New York City, agreed.
Pointing out that state workers in North Carolina are fighting for the right to collective bargaining, Mulgrew said: "We're hoping having the convention in North Carolina will help folks here in their big struggle."
For her part, Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes, D-Buffalo, spoke at the breakfast and gave a shout-out to the employees who were serving it. She stressed how important unions have been to building a better economic future for many people in Buffalo and elsewhere.
-- Jerry Zremski