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  • laborhistoryhawaii

The struggle never ends!

Aloha e

Years of oppressive labor practices, followed by martial law (1941-1944) created a willingness on the part of workers to rise up, challenge the bosses, obtain fair contracts, and gain a say in the direction of Hawai`i! The Big 5 companies that controlled almost every aspect of workers lives were not going to cede power without a fight!

Strikes by ILWU sugar workers in 1946 and ILWU dock workers in 1949 ended the total domination of labor by the Big 5! A key to their success was meticulous planning. AQ shared organizing tips with Claire Shimabukuro, Seiko “Shirley” Shiroma, and Chocki “Romeo” Toma recount their experiences and the vital role of soup kitchens and morale committees in union victories. Kauai Stevedore, Enoka Kaohi tells how hunting and fishing helped sustain dockworkers through a six month strike.

I also want to report good news. The Barbara Cox Anthony Endowment, UH Manoa School of Public Health and Social Work, has made a $25,000 commitment to the AQ documentary. This means we are making a final push to secure all funding and hopefully be able to finish the project in late 2021. Please help by making a personal donation or obtaining support from your organization. Please share the website widely and urge support! We are almost there!


Chris Conybeare

Executive Producer

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