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Monday, March 14, 2011

Conference- The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire and its Legacy: Out of the Smoke and the Flame

The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire and its Legacy
March 24, 2011; 9 a.m. — 6:30 p.m.
CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY, 10016
Registration is Free and Open to the Public

Program Click here for a printable PDF version9 – 9:15 a.m. Musical performance from the dramatic oratorio From the Fire

Kris Kukul, pianist Matt Carr Emily Mattheson
Shaunice Alexander Carrie Crow Alicia Olatuja
Catherine Brookman Roe Hartrampf Aaron Schroeder

Music by Elizabeth Swados, www.trianglefromthefire.com

9:15 – 9:25 a.m. Welcome

William Kelly, President, Graduate School & University Center, CUNY
Gregory Mantsios, Executive Director, The Murphy Institute, CUNY
Christine Quinn, Speaker, New York City Council

9:25 – 10:45 a.m. Plenary: The Political Significance and Present Day Legacy of the Triangle Fire

Moderated by Paula Finn, New Labor Forum, The Murphy Institute, CUNY

The Triangle Fire in its Historical Context
Steve Fraser, New Labor Forum, The Murphy Institute, CUNY

From Fire to Ashes: The Changed Contemporary Political Landscape
Frances Fox Piven, Graduate Center, CUNY

The Unfinished Business of Triangle Protest: Challenges and Possibilities Confronting Labor Today
Sarita Gupta, National Executive Director, Jobs with Justice

11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Concurrent Panels

Global Perspectives on Sweatshops (LAWCHA)
Beth English, Princeton University; Mary Frederickson, Miami University; Judy Gearhart,* International Labor Rights Forum; Robert Ross, Clark University

Why No Fire This Time? Acquiescence and Resistance in Politics Today
Liza Featherstone, Journalist; Steve Fraser,* New Labor Forum, Murphy Institute, CUNY; Gerry Hudson, Executive Vice President, SEIU; Stephen Pimpare, NYU

Memorializing the Past: Using Memorials and Monuments to Teach NY History
Wendy Aibel-Weiss, Director of Exhibits and Education, Tribute WTC Visitors Center; Julie Maurer,* The Gotham Center for NYC History, Graduate Center, CUNY; Christopher Moore, Historian; Ruth Sergel, Artist; Brian Tolle, Artist; Suzanne Wasserman,* The Gotham Center for NYC History, Graduate Center, CUNY; Maribeth Whitehouse, Teacher, I.S. 190, Bronx, NY

Labor and Immigration Politics: Past and Present
Muzaffar Chishti, Migration Policy Institute, NYU; Janice Fine, Rutgers University; Ruth Milkman,*Graduate Center, The Murphy Institute, CUNY; Mae Ngai, Columbia University

Labor Standards and the State
Melvyn Dubofsky, SUNY Binghamton; Terri Gerstein, Deputy Commissioner of Labor for Wage Protection and Immigrant Services, NYS Department of Labor; Rory Lancman, NY State Assemblyman and Chair of the Subcommittee on Workplace Safety; Ed Ott,* The Murphy Institute, CUNY

Grassroots Organizing for Workers’ Health and Safety Today
Luzdary Giraldo,* New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health; Barbara Rahke, Philadelphia Area Project on Occupational Safety and Health; Richard Witt, Rural and Migrant Ministry

Art and Working-Class Movements
Esther Cohen, Artist, Cultural Organizer; Ellen Todd,* George Mason University; Clyde Valentin, Hip Hop Theater Festival

Combating Domestic Sweatshops, a Roundtable (LAWCHA)
Eileen Boris,* University of California, Santa Barbara; Narbada Chhetri, Senior Community Organizer, Adhikaar for Human Rights and Social Justice, NYC; Jocelyn Gill-Campbell, Domestic Workers United;Premilla Nadasen, Queens College, CUNY

12:30 – 1:30 p.m. Lunch Break

1:30 – 2:45 p.m. Plenary: The Global Sweatshop

Moderated by Ruth Milkman, Graduate Center, The Murphy Institute, CUNY

The Economic Role of the Global Sweatshop
Saskia Sassen, Columbia University & London School of Economics

Workers’ Resistance in the Chinese Sweatshop
Ching Kwan Lee, University of California Los Angeles

Protecting Workers’ Rights in the Global Economy
Jennifer Gordon, Fordham University School of Law

Worker Protest Today in Bangladesh
Kalpona Akter, Secretary General & Executive Director of the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity

3 – 4:30 p.m. Concurrent Panels

Garment Unionism and the Garment Industry: From Triangle to Today
May Chen,* former Vice-President Workers United, currently The Murphy Institute, CUNY; Richard Greenwald, Drew University; Katie Quan, former organizer for ILGWU, currently UC Berkeley; Andrew Ross, NYU

Teaching the Triangle Fire: A Conversation (LAWCHA)
Hillary Broder, Kennedy High School, Bellmore-Merrick, N.Y.; Carmelina Cartei, Women and Gender Studies Program at Hunter College, CUNY; Tara Finneran, Bronx Arts Ensemble Teaching Artist; Rob Linné,* Adelphi University; Sharon Papp, Adelphi University; Kimberly Schiller, Huntington Public Schools, N.Y.

Child Labor: Then and Now (LAWCHA)
Sally Greenberg, National Consumers League; Hugh D. Hindman, Appalachian State University; Kriste Lindenmeyer, University of Maryland Baltimore County; Laura Lovett,*University of Massachusetts

Global Sweatshops and International Solidarity: The Case of Bangladesh
Babul Akhter, Secretary of the Bangladesh Garments and Industrial Workers Federation; Mitch Cahn,President of Unionware; Bjorn Claeson, Sweatfree Communities, International Labor Rights Forum; Mark Levinson,* Workers United, SEIU

Feminism, Low-Wage Workers, and Organized Labor
Ileen DeVault,* School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Cornell University; Susan Feiner, Francis Perkins Center & University of Southern Maine; Annelise Orleck, Dartmouth College

OSHA at 40: From Triangle to Today
Eric Frumin,* Change To Win; Gerald Markowitz, Graduate Center, CUNY; David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration; Peg Seminario, AFL-CIO

The Legacy of Triangle and Youth Labor Organizing in the US
Laura Binger, Food AND Medicine; Theresa Cheng, United Students Against Sweatshops; Jennifer Polish, STAND, Queens College, CUNY; Andres Puerta,* American Federation of Television and Radio Artists

Could Triangle Happen Today?
Peter Amato, Safety Consultant and former president of the NY chapter of American Society of Safety Engineers; Matt Connor, NYFD and The Murphy Institute, CUNY; Robert Solomon, National Fire Protection Association

4:45 – 6:30 p.m. Closing Plenary: The Contemporary Legacy of the Triangle FireModerated by Joshua Freeman, Graduate Center, The Murphy Institute, CUNY

What is the Triangle Legacy?
Alice Kessler-Harris, Columbia University

From the Triangle Fire to the BP Explosion: Protecting Workers Today
David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA

Organized Labor and the Challenges of the Twenty-First Century
Bruce Raynor, President, Workers United, SEIU

* Panel Chairperson
7 – 8:30 p.m. Gotham Center for NY History Plenary Discussion
(Separate Free Registration Required)

Rich Greenwald, Drew University
Annelise Orleck, Dartmouth College
Ellen Todd, George Mason University
Jennifer Guglielmo, Smith College
David Von Drehle (Author)
Ruth Sergel (Artist, Organizer, Remember The Fire Coalition)

To Follow: Book signing of Arcadia Press’ The New York City Triangle Factory Fire