American Labor and Irish National Caucus

Working Together for Justice in Ireland


“I know that Father McManus has moved the needle [on justice and peace], and Father, for that I offer you, on behalf of the entire AFL-CIO, a sincere Thank you.” —President Richard L. Trumka, AFL-CIO, February 3, 2016


Fr. Sean McManus—President of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus—has had a very long ongoing association with American Labor.  He founded the Irish National Caucus on February 6, 1974. In February 1975, the Executive Council of the AFL-CIO invited him to Bal Harbour, Florida to brief them on the Irish issue.  Fr. McManus in his briefing proudly quoted Irish patriot and martyr James Conolly: “The cause of Labor is the cause of Ireland; the cause of Ireland is the cause of Labor.”


The Executive Council then endorsed the Irish National Caucus.


Then about ten years later, the Executive Council invited Fr. McManus to brief them on the Mac Bride Principles—a corporate code of conduct for American companies doing business in Northern Ireland.  The AFL-CIO became the first significant group to endorse the Mac Bride Principles.

Fr. Mc Manus said: “I have met every President of the AFL-CIO since George Meany. I met with the current AFL-CIO president, Richard Trumka on April 27, 2015, in his office at the famous AFL-CIO headquarters in Washington, DC. He is a great American and a great Labor Leader—the very personification of solidarity. I remember him calling me back in the 1980s, while he was President of the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) to express solidarity with the Irish struggle for justice and for our Mac Bride Principles campaign. I was very touched that this son of a Polish father and Italian mother was demonstrating concern for the rights of Catholics in Northern Ireland. President Trumka is dedicated to solidarity, human rights, justice, and peace, locally, nationally, and globally. He would go on to help us launch and promote the World Peace Prize among the American Labor movement because he deeply believes with Pope John Paul II that “peace is the fruit of solidarity.”—


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Fr. McManus and AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka

• Fr. McManus speaking at AFL-CIO   Headquarters. February 3, 2016.


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Teddy Gleason, President, ILA, Fr. McManus and George Meany, President, AFL-CIO,

                   Bal Harbour, Florida, 1975.


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Fr. McManus and Liz Shuler, Secretary-Treasurer, AFL-CIO Fr. McManus and John Sweeney,

     Feb. 3, 2016                                                                                      former President of AFL-CIO. Feb. 14,2017






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Mark Dimonstein President, APWU,                                    Tefere Gebre, EVP, AFL-CIO & Fr. McManus

Elizabeth Powell, Sec-Treas, APWU & Fr. McManus         Dec. 5, 2017

A group of people posing for a photo Description automatically generatedFeb. 14, 2017

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Rev. Terence Melvin, Sec-Treas, NY State AFL-CIO,                  Liz Schuler, Sec.-Treas, AFL-CIO,

 Fr. McManus & Barbara Flaherty. Apr.30, 2019.                         Elizabeth Powell, Sec. Treas, APWU, Esther      

                                                                                                              Lopez, Sec.-Treas., UFCW, Barbara            

                                                                                                              Flaherty & Fr. McManus Feb. 5, 2019.