This Wednesday 3/18/15, IWW Delegate Jason goes on trial for phony charges including assaulting a police officer. Jason was attacked by the cops and slammed with a frame-up because he attended a peaceful, legal picket on 11/14/13. There are two ways you can help:
Pack the court! Come to Jason’s trial at Cambridge District Court, 4040 Mystic Valley Parkway, Medford, MA 02155 (a short walk from the Orange Line’s Wellington T). The trial starts Wednesday at 9 a.m. (Jason’s lawyer advises court-appropriate attire for supporters).
Donate! Please click here http://igg.me/at/DefendJason to help with Jason’s legal and living expenses. You can also send checks to: Boston IWW, PO Box 391724, Cambridge, MA 02139 (please indicate your check is intended to assist Jason).
Background: On 11/14/13, I was picketing with other union members in front of Cambridge’s Insomnia Cookies. Insomnia workers had joined the IWW and gone on strike in August due to long shifts ending after 2 a.m. with no breaks, for pay below minimum wage. They demanded health benefits, $15/hr and a union, and were all promptly fired.* The cops had been trying to shut down our pickets for months, becoming ever more aggressive in their attempts to help crush the fledgling Insomnia Workers’ Union.
That night in November, scores of Cambridge and Harvard cops swarmed our picket and demanded we shut down our portable PA. We promptly turned it off. The cops surrounded me (I’d been holding the PA) and began to push me backwards into the street. Concerned for my safety, my friend and fellow IWW delegate Jason cried out to the cops that they should let me be. Immediately four of them piled on Jason, one of them seizing him by the throat and covering his mouth and nose. They punched him, bloodying his face, threw him down on the ground, and pinned him partially under a car. Finally they dragged Jason away, and he was hit with false charges that could bring jail time.
Bravely refusing to accept a disadvantageous “deal” that would limit his employment opportunities, Jason has held out for a trial. The fact that he has open charges means he cannot find regular work, and is relying on odd jobs for income.
Jason goes on trial Wednesday, after months and months of appearing in court due to the frame-up. Please come to the trial to show support, or make a donation to assist Jason, and please forward this email as widely as possible.
An Injury to One is an Injury to All!
–Geoff for the Boston Industrial Workers of the World
* The union’s campaign ultimately won back pay and offers of reemployment for the strikers.