The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Chicago mayor demands cuts by city workers

Apr 29, 2002

On April 20, Chicago Mayor Richard Daley gave unions representing 14,050 city workers a choice of accepting one of three different attacks. They can accept either five unpaid layoff days, put off their negotiated raises for six months or accept 425 layoffs. The police and firefighters are asked to accept one unpaid vacation day. The mayor says the city has a 15-million-dollar shortage.

Just four days later, the Daley administration had the nerve to brag about how much money it has given to corporations in recent years: 788 million dollars – 52 times as much as the current shortage. This is through a scheme that funnels property taxes into the hands of the corporations. The mayor has no shame asking workers to give up money in the face of these massive giveaways.

Why should city workers, the vast majority of whom are modestly paid, give up anything? Eliminate some of the flow of hundreds of millions of dollars to the corporations, who sup so lavishly at the city’s trough!