USW Local 8751 represents approximately 1000 school bus drivers in Boston and Randolph, MA. Our drivers come from many countries, the majority are immigrant workers from Haiti and Cape Verde. Our members bring with them experiences and struggles for justice from home. From the time of our formation in the 1970s we have struggled for union rights and human rights here in Boston and extended solidarity to workers and oppressed people around the world. Since 2016, when we first learned of her case, we have stood with the global movement for Justice for Dr. Aafia Siddiqui.
Whereas, the foundation of USW Local 8751, the Boston School Bus Union, for over 40 years has always been the principle that “an injury to one is an injury to all,”
And Whereas, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui came to America from Pakistan in 1990 as an 18-year-old full of promise. She became a target of anti-Muslim bigotry as a result of her lawful, extracurricular activity while a student at MIT and Brandeis,
And Whereas, she became a “person of suspicion” based on bad intelligence following the 9/11 tragedy and her return to Pakistan in 2002,
And Whereas, she and her children were kidnapped and disappeared from her home city of Karachi, Pakistan in March 2003. She mysteriously reappeared in Afghanistan in a diminished mental and physical state five years later, in 2008, and was then brought back to the US in violation of international law,
And Whereas, In the context of the US government’s politically motivated anti-Muslim “War on Terror,” she was subsequently falsely charged with a crime, “attempted murder and assault of U.S. nationals and U.S. officers and employees in Afghanistan,” charges that are incredulous and lacking in any evidentiary support; found guilty and given an 86 year sentence,
And Whereas, her conditions of confinement on a military reserve base in Fort Worth, Texas (FMC Carswell) have reportedly been deplorable, doing further unconstitutional injury to her mental and physical state,
And Whereas, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui is innocent and has been subjected to the cruelest treatment including torture, assault, solitary confinement, denial of her legal and medical rights. For 18 years she has been separated from her children, family and her community.
And Whereas, Dr Fowsia Siddiqui, Aafia’s sister has been unjustly thwarted from contact and information as to Aafia’s condition.
Be it therefore resolved that, We demand the immediate release of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui and her repatriation to Pakistan so that she may be reunited with her children, family, friends and community.
Be it further resolved that, We demand that she be allowed a visit by a team of independent medical practitioners (such as “Doctors Without Borders”) to determine the full extent of her mental and physical injury, and that for as long as she remains within the custody of the United States of America, that she be treated humanely and accorded all of her human rights.
Be it further resolved that, We call on others within the labor and social justice movements to join the Campaign for Justice for Aafia Siddiqui. For more information contact the Aafia Foundation at www.aafia.org
passed unanimously at the September 23, 2021 membership meeting
André François, President
Stevan Kirschbaum, Vice President
Garry Murchison, Grievance Committee Chair
Claude St. Germain, Recording Secretary