The Fire Still Burns

Today is the 108th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire. The worst industrial disaster in NYC history, 146 garment workers—123 of them women—died in a Washington Square factory fire because doors and windows were locked to ensure workers didn’t take breaks or steal. The events of that day helped launch the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, now known as UNITE, which protects the rights and safety of textile workers and where I worked as an organizer. This picture was taken 25 years ago at the site of that disaster. I am the dark-haired butch in the left-hand corner, talking to NYC tweens who’d been inspired to support their mothers being mistreated in sweatshops. Oh, how I wish things were more improved today.

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy