American Rights at Work’s Labor Day checklist: parades, cookouts, and Twitter. Over the weekend, we teamed up with the MLBPA, the NFLPA, and the country’s leading entertainment unions, Actors’ Equity, AFTRA, SAG, and WGAE, for our second annual Labor Day Tweet-a-Thon. In 140 characters or less, high-profile tweeters came together with other union members and workers’ rights supporters from across the country to celebrate the role unions play in creating fair workplaces—and a fair economy.
Our team had an incredible time following the Tweet-a-thon over the holiday weekend. Participants using the #unionmember hash-tag ranged from rank and file union members to celebrities and sports stars—all enthusiastically tweeting their #unionmember pride on Labor Day. It was truly inspiring to see a new dialogue about the importance of workers’ rights open up online. In total, we generated 13.5 million impressions on Twitter users about the advantages of being a #unionmember.
Notable participants from the entertainment world included: Emily Bergl (@EmilyBergl) of “Southland” and “Desperate Housewives”; actor from “The OC” and “Sex, Lies and Videotape” Peter Gallagher (@petergallagher_); Golden Globe–nominated “Jackie Brown” and “Foxy Brown” star Pam Grier (@PamGrier); and Chris Gorham (@Chris_Gorham) of “Covert Affairs”.
Football stars also turned out in force, including Denver Broncos safety Brian Dawkins (@BrianDawkins), St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson (@sj39), and Dallas Cowboys running back Felix Jones (@felixjones28). Likewise, we could field an all-star team with our tweeters from the baseball diamond, including Toronto outfielder Jose Bautista (@joeybats19), Tampa third baseman Evan Longoria (@evan3longoria), Cincinnati infielder Brandon Phillips (@datdudeBP), Tampa pitcher David Price (@davidprice14), and Detroit pitcher Justin Verlander (@justinverlander).
We can’t do justice to five days worth of tweeting, but here are just a few of our favorite tweets:
Jose Bautista (@joeybats19): Toronto outfielder
Thanks to the @MLB_PLAYERS and all of those who paved the way so we can have our voices heard in our workplace #unionmember
Dallas Braden (@dallasbraden209) Oakland pitcher:
Every day I’m associated w/the MLBPA is a day I’m afforded the opportunity to become a better person on the field & off. #unionmember thanks
Bob Butler (@bobbutler7) broadcast journalist and reporter for KCBS San Francisco:
Rosanne Cash (@rosannecash) Grammy-winning recording artist:
Labor Day love to American unions. I’ve been a #unionmember since I was 20 yrs old. #aftramember
Bruce Gradkowski (@bgradkowski5) Cincinnati Bengals quarterback:
A level playing field is important in every workplace not just the #NFL. Proud to be a #unionmember this #LaborDay weekend! Please RT!
Steve Hely (@helytimes): Writer, “The Office”
Today you will see a lot of comedy writers and coal miners high five, because both are #unionmembers.
Steven Jackson (@sj39): St. Louis Rams running back
As the holiday wknd approaches #LaborDay I support workers’ rights and I’m proud to be a #unionmember of @NFLPA
Anika Noni Rose (@AnikaNoniRose): Tony-winning actor, “Princess and the Frog,” “The Good Wife,” “Dreamgirls,” and “For Colored Girls”
@araw without my unions I couldn’t work safely, fairly, have liveable wages, or health insurance. I’m with you 100%. AEA, SAG, AFTRA!
Woody Schultz (@UGottaWoody) actor, producer, and performance capture artist for digital films, including “Avatar”:
Remember life before weekends, working long hours w/out overtime or minimum wage in unsafe environments? Me either. Thx unions! #unionmember
For more information and a complete roundup of celebrity #unionmember tweets, visit http://www.unionmember.org