Dear Brothers and Sisters,
As we prepare to celebrate Independence Day with friends, family, and our extended NATCA family, we would like to take a moment to reflect on what this holiday means to our country and to us as union members. The Fourth of July marks the day that the 13 American colonies declared themselves a new nation, the United States of America. This declaration of independence was well more than a listing of grievances against the King. Our founding fathers also asserted certain natural and legal rights. Since our founding, their declaration has become a well-known statement on human rights, particularly the sentence:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
This is one of the best-known sentences in the English language, containing what some believe to be among the most potent and consequential words in American history. The passage represents a moral standard to which the United States always has strived.
Unions have played a central role in realizing these unalienable rights. Since the earliest organizing efforts by labor in the United States in the late 18th century, the labor movement has played an essential role in the advancement of the rights of workers, women, children, immigrants, and others. Unions fought for better wages, reasonable hours, and safer working conditions. The labor movement led efforts to stop child labor, get health benefits for workers and their families, and provide aid to workers who were injured or retired. Union members have always played a critical role in civil rights struggles. These advances were moral victories that not only improved the lives of American workers, but also made our nation better by more fully realizing the rights asserted by our founding fathers.
On Independence Day, you should be particularly proud to be a member of a union, because of this great legacy. Every day, NATCA members join their union brothers and sisters in proud solidarity throughout the United States and continue to fight for important workers' rights and benefits. Thank you for joining us in this movement.
On the Fourth of July, NATCA members also should be proud about the vital role that they play in the safe travel of millions of passengers this weekend as well as throughout the year. Travelers will be excited to see family and friends while dreaming about their vacation destinations, but they will not be worried about their safety. This is because of dedicated professionals - you and your brothers and sisters - who work tirelessly to ensure the safety of the flying public 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We want to thank our members, especially those who will be working this holiday weekend.
We wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy Independence Day!
In proud solidarity,
Executive Vice President