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Foster Recognizes “Scabby The Rat” Creator Don Newton

Jul 16, 2015
Press Release

Washington, DC—Today, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) spoke on the house floor to recognize Don Newton, a proud 40-year member of the International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Local 56 of West Chicago, Illinois, and a creator of Scabby the Rat.  

Video of Foster’s speech is available here.

Text of Foster’s remarks is below:

Thank  you, Mr. Speaker.

I rise today in honor of Don Newton, a proud 40-year member of the International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Local 56, of West Chicago, Illinois – and a friend of mine – who passed away recently.

There was a time when workers fighting for their rights were met with lead pipes, and management-paid gangs.

Today, they fight for their rights with picket lines, elections, and the rule of law – and with icons like Scabby, the Inflatable Rat.

Scabby the Rat – a towering, inflatable mascot of labor protests – was dreamed up by Don Newton and his fellow organizer Ken Lambert during labor disputes in the 1990s.

Today, Scabby can be seen throughout the country, reminding us of the constant struggle for fair wages and safe working conditions, and the importance of unity and solidarity in labor disputes.

On the front lines of protests, as workers fight to hold on to the protections they need to maintain fair wages and a healthy middle class, Scabby the Rat, and the memory of Don Newton, will never be forgotten.

And, you can now follow Scabby the Rat on Wikipedia & Facebook!

Thank you Mr. Speaker, and I yield back.

 

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