Anakbayan NJ Presents: This Bloody Blundering Business



“‘This Bloody Blundering Business’ examines the history of American intervention in the Philippines following the Spanish American War. A silent movie format with lively ragtime piano music is combined with a dramatically understated narration and excerpts from `newsreels’ of the period to reveal the nature of American attitudes toward Third World peoples and cultures. 

Directed by Peter Davis
1978, 30 minutes” [from]

Join Anakbayan as we celebrate Philippine Solidarity Week, marking the anniversary of the Philippine-American War.

Learn more about the Philippine-American War of 1899, Continued US Military Presence in the Philippines, and the Enduring People’s Movement for Genuine Independence with special guest speakers.

WHEN: Saturday, February 9, 2013, 3-5pm

WHERE: Pope Lecture Hall @ St. Peter’s University
115 Glenwood Avenue (btw JFK Blvd and West Side Ave)
Jersey City, NJ 07306

$10 suggested donation
No one will be turned away due to lack of funds

Anakbayan NJ
BAYAN USA Northeast
St. Peter’s University Social Justice Program

*If your organization would like to co-sponsor this event, please email us at ASAP. Thank you!

For more information, please contact Bea Sabino at 201 779 6886 or email

For more Philippine Solidarity Week events, check out

Filipino Youth and Students Extend Support to Enslaved Filipino Oil Rig Workers and Their Families

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Photos by Robert Roy

For Immediate Release

21 January 2013

Matthew Cheirs II, Chairperson, Anakbayan New York
Bea Sabino, Chairperson, Anakbayan New Jersey


Activists urge the community to defend immigrant workers’ rights in the face of modern-day slavery

New York, NYProgressive Filipino youth group, Anakbayan, participated in a series of events in New York City to demand justice for the Grand Isle Shipyard (GIS) workers. A group of over 70 Filipino workers have filed a class action lawsuit against Grand Isle Shipyard, Inc. for labor abuse and exploitation, unlawful deductions, isolation and violation of civil liberties, human trafficking, racism, discrimination and modern day slavery.
Since 2008, an estimated 500 Filipinos have worked for GIS, deemed one of the most dangerous oil platforms in the Gulf of Mexico. Its serious safety code violations need to be addressed immediately, according to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement.
The Justice for GIS Filipino Workers Campaign (J4GIS-Fil-Workers), led by Philippine Forum, was launched on January 16 with a press conference composed of community leaders, Filipino civil rights attorney, Ellaine Carr, two former GIS workers, and the wife and children of Avelino Tajonera, one of the three Filipino workers killed in the oil platform explosion on November 16, 2012.

Youth Unite with Immigrant Workers

The New York and New Jersey chapters of Anakbayan are collaborating with various immigrant and worker groups in the area to raise awareness about labor trafficking and modern day slavery.

On January 18th, a picket was held in front of the Philippine Consulate in New York to demand accountability from the Philippine government.

Philippine Ambassador Cuisia claims he has been aware of the unsafe working conditions at GIS since 2010; yet 3 of our kababayans are dead, hundreds exploited. The Philippine government, through the Labor Export Program, supplies the world’s industries with millions of Filipino workers. Workers whose rights and welfare the government fails to protect,” said Matthew Cheirs II, Chairperson of Anakbayan New York.

The Louisiana contingent’s visit concluded with a Community Reception and Candlelight Vigil on the evening of January 19 at the Bayanihan Community Center in Queens, NY.

Dozens of supporters came out to hear the workers’ testimonies about the harsh conditions they experienced while working at GIS. The Tajonera family shared stories of courage and grief over the death of Avelino Tajonera, who risked his life to provide for his wife and young children.

Trafficking survivors, including the “Florida 15”, shared words of encouragement with the GIS workers. Community members and grassroots organizations also commended the workers’ determination and expressed their support for the campaign.

Alice Feng, Educational Officer of the Revolutionary Students Coordinating Committee, said in solidarity, “As students, we have the task of bringing their [the workers’] struggles to light in the broadest way possible. Our struggles on campus are connected to our struggles in our communities and our homelands.

Take a Stand Against Slavery

The workers’ week- long visit to New York City is only the beginning. Anakbayan is urging Filipino- American youth in New York and New Jersey to stand up for immigrant rights and actively participate in the J4GIS-Fil-Workers campaign.

Filipino laborers escaping slavery under Spanish colonial rule at the time of the Manila- Acapulco trade were the first Filipino settlers in the United States. They found sanctuary in Louisiana in the late 18th century. Today, workers imported from the Philippines, are enduring similar conditions that Filipino pioneers in the US fled from centuries ago,” shared Bea Sabino, Chairperson of Anakbayan New Jersey.

Slavery should not have a place in the 21st century,” continued Sabino. “We call on our fellow Filipino youth to take a stand against exploitation and racism. Help us spread the word by organizing public forums and signing up for the Fact Finding Mission to Louisiana on February 20-24, 2013.

To set up an information session at your church, campus or community space, please contact Bea Sabino (201.779.6886) for New Jersey, or Matthew Cheirs II (917.601.0378) for New York.

For more information about the Justice for GIS Filipino Workers Campaign, please contact Anne Beryl Corotan (516.901.1832), or Jonna Baldres (646.578.7390), of Philippine Forum.###

GIS banner

Filipino-Americans Lend Voices, Urge More Support for Continued Opposition to Philippine Cybercrime Prevention Act, aka “E-Martial Law”

Press Release
January 15, 2013

Reference: Jackelyn Mariano, Deputy Secretary General, BAYAN USA,

Filipino-Americans Lend Voices, Urge More Support for Continued Opposition to Philippine Cybercrime Prevention Act, aka “E-Martial Law”


Filipino-Americans are lending their voices to the continuing opposition to what many are calling “E-Martial Law”, or the Philippine Cybercrime Prevention Act, which was first proposed by the administration of President Benigno Aquino III last October. Today, protests resumed in the Philippines as the Supreme Court (SC) hearings over to the constitutionality of the Act began.

After being met with massive protests- both online and offline- the Supreme Court was forced to issue a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) on the Act’s implementation until February 6, 2013.

Incidentally, today’s SC hearing began as the many internet freedom activists around the world mourn and pay tribute to Aaron Swartz, the young American computer programmer who dedicated his life’s work to the cause of freedom of information on the internet.

“The Cybercrime Prevention Act is a tool of the reactionary Philippine state to curb public protest against its anti-people policies. It essentially uses the tenets of the repressive Martial Law era, just now it’s applied online,” said Bernadette Ellorin, Chairperson of BAYAN USA. “People can be fined, jailed, and targeted with state violence for simply liking a post on Facebook that critiques the government.”

Critics of the Act denounce its supposedly good intentions to combat crime on the Internet and instead see it as a repressive mechanism to criminalize Internet users. GABRIELA, an alliance of progressive women’s organizations, insists that the cyber sex provision of RA10175 will neither punish patrons who exploit Filipino sex workers, nor work to solve deep-rooted economic problems in the country that forces the latter to sell their bodies for a living. It will only continue to criminalize sex workers from a moral standpoint, a majority of whom are women and LGBT.

Ellorin emphasizes how the fight for freedom of speech and opinion on the internet in the Philippines is connected to struggles around the world. “At this day and age, during this global financial crisis, oppressed and working people around the world have a relatively easier way to share each other’s struggles and build solidarity on the web. By shutting down this connection, however, people’s protest will not be silenced. It will only be further aggravated and grow fiercer as it reaches the millions of internet users worldwide!”

BAYAN USA urges all people who utilize the internet as a means of expression, who voice their political opinion freely, and understand that having these internet freedoms is not a crime to register their opposition to the Cybercrime Prevention Act and take a stand by signing this petition initiated by the Kabataan (Youth) Partylist in the Philippines:


BAYAN-USA is an alliance of 18 progressive Filipino organizations in the U.S. representing students, scholars, women, workers, artists, and youth. As the first and largest international chapter of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN-Philippines), BAYAN-USA serves as an information bureau for the national democratic movement of the Philippines and as a center for educating, organizing, and mobilizing anti-imperialist and progressive Filipinos in the U.S.

Survivors and Families of the victims of the Grand Isle Shipyard (GIS) speaks out to fight for truth and justice for over 70 GIS Filipino workers


January 16, 2013 5169011832

Survivors and Families of the victims of the Grand Isle Shipyard (GIS) speaks out to fight for truth and justice for over 70 GIS Filipino workers.

Three Filipino workers killed while three more are severely injured in Black Elk explosion on november 16, 2012. Over 70 Filipino Workers filed a class action for violation of FLSA, discrimination, trafficking, slavery, wage theft and fraud against the Grand Isle Shipyard (GIS). GIS is a US company based in Louisiana supplying labor to oil companies in the Gulf of Mexico and recruited Filipino welders, pipefitters, and scaffolders to work on its various projects in the Gulf.

A few of the survivors who filed complaints, families of the victims of the Black Elk explosion and community

advocates will speak at a press conference at the Bayanihan Community Center on january 16, 2013 at 12pm. They will speak about their experiences, raise awareness about the case and encourage other victims and survivors to join the campaign for justice for the GIS Filipino workers.

This event is sponsored by the Philippine Forum and all its allied organizations who joined task force for the Justice for the GIS Filipino workers campaign.

ImageWhat: Press Conference with GIS Filipino workers, families of victims of black elk explosion and community advocates regarding the Justice for GIS Filipino workers campaign.

When: January 16, 2013 at 12:00p

Where: Bayanihan Community Center, 40-21 69th St. Woodside, NY.Sponsors: Philippine forum NY, Anakbayan NY, Anakbayan NJ, New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines, Filipinas for Rights and empowerment, The National Alliance for Filipino Concerns and International Migrants Alliance. 

For more information: Anne Beryl Corotan (  or Jonna Baldres (


Thank You for an Awesome Year! Keep Serving the People!

To all our friends, allies and supporters,

We want to thank you for a memorable and productive 2012. We also want to wish you a happy and meaningful New Year. Throughout 2012, you have supported our work in educating, organizing, and mobilizing for our people’s rights and welfare, both here in the US and in the Philippines.
Here are some of our accomplishments for this year

  • Raised awareness and organized community support for the fight against labor trafficking, particularly for the case of the Florida 15 workers [1]
  • Raised awareness on the environmental situation in the Philippines; gathered hundreds of signatures in support of environmental protection in the Philippines and raised thousands of funds for relief effort back home during times of calamity (Typhoon Sendong, Typhoon Pablo) [2]
  • Raised awareness and mobilized community to take a stand in defense of Civil Liberties and against the Cyber Crime Prevention Law in the Philippines
  • Organized and participated in local grassroots relief work in New Jersey and New York after hurricane Sandy [3]
  • Held community forums on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Immigration Reform [4]
  • Participated in the founding of Anakbayan-USA, a progressive national Filipino/Filipino-American youth movement in the United States [5]

We wouldn’t have accomplished all of these without you. We hope you continue to support our work through 2013 and beyond in serving our people. Again, salamat! Mabuhay and maligayang bagong taon! (Thank you! Long live and happy new year!)

With love and solidarity,
Anakbayan New York & New Jersey Family 🙂


Here are some ways you can help and support Anakbayan:
1. Join the movement! Become a member of Anakbayan now. Email us at

2. Make a donation ($5, $10, $25+ ) to Anakbayan by clicking here
3. Stay updated and spread the word about us through social network accounts (twitter, facebook: Anakbayan NJ, Anakbayan NY)
4. Support our on-going fundraiser for the survivors of Typhoon Pablo (Bopha) in the Philippines by clicking here


And in the spirit of the holiday season, we are asking for donations for relief efforts for Typhoon Pablo which hit the Philippines early December and has affected over 5 million people. All funds raised will go towards BALSA Mindanao, a network of churches, schools, and disaster response working to provide relief efforts to support typhoon victims. Funds can be sent online or by mail, through the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON). Click here for the full details:

NAFCON has established cash and check collections centers throughout the U.S and will take donations via Paypal at

For mailed checks please make payable to “Tulong Sa Bayan” and send to 519 S. Spring St., Los Angeles, CA 90013.On memo please write: NAFCON Bayanihan Relief and your city of residence. Donations of $250 or more will be tax deductible.  Please include return address with donations.

For more information on regional collection centers, fundraising and relief activities in your area please contact NAFCON regional coordinators nearest you or go to our website.

Northeast:    Anne Corotan      (516) 901 – 1832

Midwest:       Lorena Buni       (224) 678-1897

Norcal:           Ryan Leano          (626) 534 – 4971

Socal:              Alex Montances       (253) 381 – 7444

Local Monetary Drop/Send Sites All checks payable to “Tulong Sa Bayan”

Northeast: Philippine Forum: 40-21 69th St. Woodside, NY

Midwest: Good Shepherd Congregation: 4707 W. Pratt Ave Lincolnwood, Il 60712

Norcal: Filipino Community Center: 4681 Mission St. SF, Ca 94112

Socal: Tulong Sa Bayan 519 S. Spring St., LA, CA 90013