First Fridays

“First Fridays” Vigil for Jobs — New York City
*Vigils are temporarily suspended, pending legislative developments on a jobs bill.

Come Stand With Us in Albany, Chicago, Dayton, Detroit,
Long Island NY, and New York City
to Send a Message to Washington, DC
Create a National Jobs Program
Joblessness and Service Cuts Must Not Become the New “Normal”

Friday, June 3, 2011 — 12:30 pm — 1:30 pm — East 47th — 48th Sts. in front of Senator Schumer’s Manhattan office, 757 Third Ave.

Join the Vigil for Jobs on the First Friday of every month because:

This past year, one out of every four families in America have been affected by unemployment. In January 2011, 14 million persons were officially unemployed, and another 15 million, the “hidden unemployed,” wanted full-time work but were forced to work part-time or wanted a job but were not actively looking because of discouragement or other reasons. The best way to solve this crisis is for the federal government to create a new national jobs program, similar to the innovative work programs created by President Roosevelt during the 1930’s Great Depression. We urge Chuck Schumer, New York’s Senior Senator, to take our message to Washington, D.C.

Congress and the President must act immediately to:

  1. Pass H.R. 589 to extend emergency benefits for the long-term unemployed who have been jobless for longer than 93-99 weeks.
  2. Resume financial assistance to state and local governments to avoid massive layoffs in health care, education and other essential services.
  3. Create “Green Jobs” in the United States and defund foreign wars and military bases.

Speakers at Vigil:

Bill Henning, CWA-Local 1180;
Heidi Sigfried, Hunger Action Network;
Jim Perlstein, Professional Staff Congress-CUNY;
Owen Rogers, Fight Back;
Neal Frumpkin, DC 37 Retirees’ Association;
Sid Socolar, Rekindling Reform;
Jon Bloom, Workers Defense League;
Trudy Goldberg, National Jobs for All Coalition;
Gaby Moreno, National Organization for Women-NYS

Endorsers of the New York Action

  • Alumni Association of Social Service Employees Union Local 371
  • DC 37
  • Americans for Democratic Action, NYC Chapter
  • Communications Workers of America, Local 1180
  • Democratic Socialists of America, NYC Chapter
  • Empire State Economic Security Campaign
  • Greater New York Labor-Religion Coalition
  • Healing of the Nations Fndtn, Rev. James Forbes, Jr., Pres.
  • Hunger Action Network of NY State
  • Job Party
  • Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, NYC Chapter
  • National Jobs for All Coalition
  • National Organization for Women – NYS
  • New York Jobs with Justice
  • Professional Staff Congress/CUNY, AFT Local 2334
  • The American 99ers Union
  • U.S. Labor Against the War, NYC Chapter
  • Veterans for Peace, NYC Chapter
  • Workers Defense League, Inc.

Individual Endorsements, org. for identification only:


  • Tom Anderson, Vice Chairman, Organization of Staff Analysts
  • Keith Brooks, United Federation of Teachers
  • Leslie Cagan, Co-Founder, Organization United for Peace and Justice
  • Barbara Garson , author
  • Connie Gruber
  • Martin Melkonian, Adj. Assoc. Professor, Hofstra University
  • Ed Ott, former Exec. Dir. NYC Central Labor Council
  • Dorothy Savage, Former Dir. of Education & Leadership Ministries, The National Council of Churches
  • Julia Willebrand, delegate, U.S. Green Party Natl. Committee

For more info: or
Contact: national vigil coordinator Logan Martinez (937-433-8260 or 937-275-7259 or loganmartinez(at); NYS vigil coordinator, Noreen Connell , 212-586-3257 or norconnell(at);

First Friday Vigil for Jobs – Come Stand With Us in Albany NY, Chicago, Dayton, Detroit, Long Island NY, Lynn MA, New York City, and Syracuse to Send a Message to Washington, DC

**Note: No Vigil will be held in May due to scheduling difficulties.**

Our goal is to call attention to the unemployment crisis, and the need for urgent federal action to reduce unemployment, including a national federal jobs program similar to the WPA. During the last serious economic depression in the 1930’s, President Roosevelt put millions to work doing useful jobs that made a lasting contribution to our country — roads, bridges, schools, libraries, housing, theater, painting, road guides, parks, and much more.

“Jobless recovery” is a contradiction in terms, and completely unacceptable to New Yorkers. We must insist that the Congress and President act swiftly to create millions of new jobs in clean energy and conservation; infrastructure and mass transit; education, health care, public and human services; and by creating a national industrial policy to stabilize and increase the number of manufacturing jobs, pink-and-blue-color jobs, and employment opportunities for youth and those nearing retirement. Also, the Federal Reserve should be encouraged to direct banks to expand lending for community job creation and small business.

This is an opportunity for cross-issue organizing around the central issue facing our nation, our city, our organizational members, and millions of people joblessness and economic insecurity.

Why the First Friday?

On the first Friday of each month, new statistics are released by the US Department of Labor on the official unemployment rate. This monthly announcement provides an opportunity to reach out to the media and raise awareness about the unemployment crisis and potential solutions.

Join Us!!

For more information on national actions and organizing a vigil in your community, contact Logan Martinez at loganmartinez2u [at] or (937) 275-7259

Endorse NYC First Friday Vigil for Jobs