FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Research and Communications Associate
P: 202-638-0320 x115
WASHINGTON, Sept. 25, 2017—Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO (DPE) President Paul E. Almeida issued the following statement in response to President Donald Trump’s remarks criticizing NFL players and calling on NFL team owners to punish players for expressing themselves by kneeling during the national anthem:
“Our unions’ members include over four million professionals working as nurses, teachers, scientists, journalists, performers, and athletes. We lock arms with our union brothers in the NFL in support of their ability to speak out on racial inequality and create change with peaceful action.
NFL players are more than employees of their teams, they are neighbors, family members, and Americans. As community members, NFL players cannot be expected to ignore what goes on outside the walls of NFL stadiums.
Not only do President Trump’s remarks run counter to the values of free speech and expression put forth in the U.S. Constitution, they also suggest that NFL players should have to choose between expressing themselves and maintaining their economic livelihoods. No matter the profession, DPE and its affiliate unions will always be by the side of people using their rights to improve their workplaces and communities.”
The Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO (DPE) is a coalition of 23 unions representing over four million professional and technical union members. DPE affiliate unions represent professionals in over 300 occupations in education and healthcare; science, engineering, and technology; legal, business, and management; media, entertainment, and the arts; and public administration.