Marty Walsh, Mayor of Boston, Secretary of Labour nominee

Marty Walsh, Mayor of Boston, has been nominated by U.S. President-elect Joe Biden as Secretary of Labour.

The news reports that Martin J. Walsh, Mayor of Chicago since 2014, whose parents were from Co Galway, has been nominated by President elect Joe Biden to be his Secretary of Labour has been welcomed by the Cork Mother Jones Committee. If  Mayor Walsh is confirmed he would be the first union member to be Secretary of Labour in almost 50 years. He originally joined the Labourer’ Union local 223, eventually becoming president. Later he led the Boston Building Trade Council.


According to Jim Nolan spokesperson for the Committee.


“Back at the 2014 Spirit of Mother Jones Festival, the recently elected Mayor Walsh took the trouble to send a wonderful message of support for the festival. The letter was delivered and presented to the Cork Mother Jones Committee on behalf of Mayor Walsh by the late Professor James Green, of the University of Massachusetts, Boston, who spoke at the 2014 festival. We were absolutely delighted at the time that the Mayor of Boston had recognised the Spirit of Mother Jones festival in Shandon in such a manner and was so forthright in praising our efforts to obtain due recognition for Cork-born labour hero Mother Jones.”

Jim Nolan


In his letter  dated July 25th 2014, Mayor Walsh thanked the Cork Mother Jones Committee “for honouring her powerful legacy” and went on to say “like Mother Jones we must abide wherever there is a fight against wrong”.


All at the festival were very appreciative of this letter which detailed the Mayor’s efforts over many years to support workers’ rights.


This is an extract from Mayor Walsh in his 2014 letter to the Cork Mother Jones Committee,

I know that the simple notion of fair day’s pay for an honest day’s work is far from a simple thing to achieve. Securing justice takes a hard, complex and constant struggle, it takes collective action that is only accomplished through the kind of community building you are doing this weekend in Cork” 

Marty Walsh – Lord Mayor of Boston


In response to the recent news, committee spokesman Jim Nolan issued the following statement:

Mother Jones herself could not have put it better and the Cork Mother Jones Committee proposes to send a letter of congratulations to Marty Walsh on his being nominated to this powerful Secretary of Labour position in the US Government. .”

Jim Nolan

Here is a link to our post about Mayor Walsh’s letter from 2014, which includes his full letter of support for the Festival: https://motherjonescork.com/2014/08/06/greetings-from-the-mayor-of-boston/

Greetings from the Mayor of Boston

The Cork Mother Jones Committee received an enormous number of messages of support for the recent Spirit of Mother Jones Festival from around the world. Among those received was the following message of support from Martin J Walsh, Mayor of Boston. We are delighted to have received this message of support for the Spirit of Mother Jones Festival and wish to thank  Mayor Walsh for his kind message.    

Letter from the Mayor of Boston

Letter from the Mayor of Boston

Dear Delegates to the Mother Jones Festival,

On behalf of the people of Boston, I extend my warmest greetings to all of you as you stand together for the dignity of working families in Ireland, America, and around the world.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh of Boston.  Pic: David Parsons, Creative Commons via Wikipedia

Mayor Martin J. Walsh of Boston. Pic: David Parsons, Creative Commons via Wikipedia

Ireland holds a special place in my heart. Like the young Mary Harris, my parents were emigrants.  I was shaped by the voices and values of Irish working people.  And I share that Irish foundation with many of my fellow Bostonians.  President John F. Kennedy spoke of an “emerald thread” running through the history of the Irish: a resilience in the face of struggle that survives in their descendants around the world. This pattern is woven deeply into the rich and diverse tapestry of Boston’s people.

And the struggles of all working families are never far from my mind. I grew up in a union household;  I’ve belonged to the Laborers union since I was 18 years old; and I’ve spent my career in public service advocating advocating for workers’ rights.  I know that the simple notion of a fair day’s pay for an honest day’s work is far from a simple thing to achieve.  Securing justice takes a hard, complex, and constant struggle.  It takes collective action that can only be accomplished by the kind of community building you are doing this weekend in Cork.

I know, as you do, that this struggle takes place the world over. Like Mother Jones, we must “abide wherever there is a fight against wrong”.  So I thank you for honoring her powerful legacy. And I thank you for shining a modern light on the timeless struggles of working people to defend their dignity and secure their rights.

Sincerely,

Martin J. Walsh

Mayor of Boston