'Get up, get down, Chicago is a union town!'...Logan Square backs CTU in April 1 events... Parents, students, teachers mobilize at the Logan Square Eagle on the way to downtown rally...

A part of the crowd that rallied at the Logan Square Eagle on April 1, 2016, before going downtown for the massive rally led by the Chicago Teachers Union. Substance photo by Kim Scipes.A cacophony of bleeping horns, loud chants and the sound of footsteps reverberated off Milwaukee Avenue in Logan Square on Friday, April 1, 2016 as the neighborhood mobilized to support the Chicago Teachers Union in their one-day strike. Between 250 - 300 people, mobilized by the Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA), took over one lane of the avenue as they marched toward the Eagle in the heart of Logan Square.

Chants were clear: “Get up, get down, Chicago is a union town!” as well as “Just say no to Rahm’s lies, defend our right to organize!” While much of the attention has rightfully been focused on the Chicago Teachers Union in their one-day strike, what must be recognized is the depth of support for the CTU in the neighborhoods. People strongly demand excellent education for their children, and they see CTU members providing it — and they want public support for their teachers, and demonstrated it once again!

Marchers reached the Eagle, and were joined by local residents, armed with signs, chants and determination, and the crowd easily doubled in size. Music played over loud speakers, carrying songs like Rebel Diaz’ militant anthem, “Chicago Teacher,” and Tracey Chapman’s heartfelt, “Talking Revolution.”

MC-ing the event was Alderman Carlos Ramierez Rosa, who said while he was honored to represent the people of the 35th Ward, this day he was just MC-ing. Local politicians attending included Rosa, 31st Ward Alderman Millie Santiago, State Representative Will Guzzardi, State Senator-elect Omar Aquino, another whose name I didn’t get, while Jaime Andrade was on vacation but sent members of his office, and 32nd Ward Alderman Scott Waguespak got delayed by traffic so sent word he would meet us downtown.

As more and more protests take place in Chicago, creative signage is becoming a 21st Century art form. Above, one of the many signs displayed at the Logan Square Eagle on April 1, 2016. Substance photo by Kim Scipes.Supporting the CTU was the Logan Square Neighborhood Association, Reclaim Chicago, United Neighbors of the 35th Ward, and Northwest Side Housing Center. After the spirited rally, folks walked over and boarded the Blue Line “el” to the Thompson Center, where they joined thousands of their closest friends. It was an impressive day of solidarity with and support for the Chicago Teachers Union.


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