Worker’s Cup Soccer Tournament mixes fun with political activism

LatinaLista — There’s no doubt that the Presidential campaign of 2008 will go down in history for a variety of reasons. One of those is the amount of political activism it inspired among people who never before dreamt of getting involved in politics.
Political activism is alive and well wherever we look — from Facebook to even soccer fields!
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This weekend, there will be a special tournament taking place for the first time in California that plans to mix soccer with politics. It’s called the Worker’s Cup Soccer Tournament and it was organized by local unions and community groups.

The tournament will bring together members of Warehouse Workers United (WWU), National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON), Pomona Economic Opportunity Center (PEOC), Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice (CLUE), and local residents.

The area where the soccer tournament will take place, California’s Inland Empire, is characterized as being ground zero for the Great Recession with nation-leading rates of unemployment and foreclosures.
To give area workers a respite from their daily worries, organizers decided to create a day of fun but putting to use political organizing skills they fine-tuned during last year’s national elections.
While several hundred workers and their families are expected to turn out and watch 10 teams compete for trophies, the day will also include free health care screenings, letter-writing and petition signing campaigns, along with, music, face painting for the kids and free food and drinks.

The Worker’s Cup soccer tournament will give workers and their families a unique opportunity for a day of fun and activism. With letter writing to elected officials like Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a petition directed at Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano calling for a humane approach to immigration reform, and health screening by the Inland Empire Community Health Center, the soccer tournament will raise awareness on a range of issues from the Employee Free Choice Act to health care reform.

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