May 2, 2017
By WNYLaborToday.com Editor-Publisher Tom Campbell
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Williamsville, NY – They came to play a cruel game of Jenga outside U.S. Congressman Chris Collins’ Suburban Buffalo District Office – those concerned with saving and preserving Job Safety and Health, Pre-Existing Conditions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Occupational Safety & Health (OSHA), Collective Bargaining and Job Training, as well as Updated Silica Standards, Great Lakes Restoration, Endocrine Screening, Lead Protection and Federal Enforcements, to name but a few.
But it was no game they were playing. It was in protest of the stance the Trump Administration and Collins, a mouthpiece for the pro-business/Anti-Worker president, have taken on a number of extremely worthwhile and still-needed programs that Trump, the Western New York Congressman and Republican-controlled Washington have targeted for attack and abolishment.
And one by one, speaker after speaker, a singular cardboard block was pulled away from the towering replica of the well-known game until it became weakened and ultimately crashed to the ground. If this is allowed to happen in Washington, the speakers collectively said, it will be more than a game that is lost – it be dozens and dozens of hard-fought protections and regulations that positively impact Americans of every color, creed and economic background.
With a number of area residents attending Friday’s (April 28th) Jenga event in the Buffalo Suburb of Williamsville wearing written out numbers describing their local zip codes to confirm they were constituents of Collins and “not paid protestors” (the reason that so many Republican Representatives are using when they decline to meet with those they represent back home), Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1168 Representative Ann Converso (pictured below) – a 35-year Registered Nurse (RN) said: “We want to send a ‘strong message’ to Congressman Collins that ‘we will not sit idly by’ and ‘that it is unacceptable to those who have fought so hard (for these protections and regulations).’ ‘You have refused to meet with us, which is reprehensible.’ ‘You work for us’ and ‘I want to be called a voting constituent.’”