Message from President McCutcheon
Earlier this month, following heavy rains in the Southeast, Tennessee’s Cumberland River rose seventeen feet above flood stage. It is in one of the largest non-hurricane weather disasters in US history. The flooded area in and around Nashville, according to Local 1000 member Janis Ian, is “the size of New Jersey.” Thirty people died. The Grand Old Opry’s stage was under two feet of water. The Country Music Hall of Fame was flooded. Symphony Hall was decimated losing not only its performance space but countless instruments. And, in the wake of the Times Square bombing and the Gulf oil spill, little has found its way into daily news reports. Some of this is due, undoubtedly, to the extraordinary local efforts at recovery and relief. But more is needed.
AFM Local 257 in Nashville recently underwent a remarkable shake-up in leadership. The result is a very new Nashville Local, one that has reached out to Local 1000 in hopes of forging important and fraternal alliances to help create a very new AFM International. President Dave Pomeroy and I jointly hosted our booth at the International Bluegrass Music Association conference in Nashville last year. He signed on as a co-sponsor on to our AFM Convention recording resolution. The ties between the Nashville Local and Local 1000 are more than ones of union solidarity, they are close, they are personal. We have many members living in and around Nashville. This disaster is our own.
Local 257 has set up a relief fund at: http://www.nashvillemusicians.org/?pg=news&newsId=36. We encourage all Local 1000 members to be generous and compassionate in their support of this fund. Our sisters and brothers in Nashville need our help. They’ve always been there for us. Now it’s our turn.