March 27, 2016
By Tara Jessup
Harlem, NY – James J. Claffey Jr., President of IATSE Local One, the Broadway Stage Hands' Union, has announced the union's endorsement of Clyde Williams for Congress in New York's 13th district, the seat currently held by Charles Rangel.
"We support Mr. Williams' vision for promoting job creation, affordable housing and improved educational opportunity for our members in NY–13 and across the state," said James Claffey. "Clyde Williams has a demonstrated track record of solving problems in the community, and is the kind of political leader we need – embracing accountability for results and bringing the community together."
In 1998 Local One, at the request of the stagehands working at the Apollo, organized a strike that won the Apollo's technical crew the right to join the union. Local One's efforts to gain a living wage and benefits for the Apollo stagehands were opposed the Uptown political establishment, including Assemblyman Keith Wright.
"IATSE has played such an important role in protecting the rights of workers in this community and throughout the country, and I am delighted to receive their support for my campaign," said Clyde Williams. "Through conversations with workers and other members of this community, it is clear that people are seeking new ideas and fresh leadership for this district, not the same, tired politics of Albany. I am looking forward to delivering that for the people of this community".
IATSE's announcement follows a number of high profile endorsements for Mr. Williams, including former Senate Majority LeaderTom Daschle, former New Mexico Governor and Latino leader Bill Richardson, and former Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, amongst others.