CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Coal Association and the Friends of Coal would like to thank all the folks from across Appalachia who made the trip to Washington, DC for Wednesday’s rally to support coal mining jobs.
More than 2,000 coal miners, their families and friends from across the region made the two-day trip to the nation’s capitol to attend the rally in Russell Park beside the U.S. Capitol. The crowd heard messages of support from several of the region’s prominent political leaders, including U.S. Senators Jay Rockefeller and Carte Goodwin, Representatives Shelley Capito and Nick Rahall, Gov. Joe Manchin as well as national and state elected officials from across the region.
“This trip and rally really served notice on the folks in Washington that the people of the Appalachian region and the coal mining community are angry,” said Bill Raney, president of the West Virginia Coal Association. “The folks in Washington heard the voices of Appalachian coal and saw the faces of the people who are being hurt by the anti-coal, anti-business policies of the Obama Administration, the EPA and Congress.”
Raney said the Association wants to thank all those who made the trip aboard more than 30 buses from locations all across the region.
“Many of these people were on buses for 10, 12, 15 hours,” Raney said. “They took their message to the halls of Congress and then they got back on buses and came home. There were working coal miners, retirees, moms, dads and children – people who depend on coal for their livelihood.”
“I want to thank FACES of Coal for their tremendous logistical and organizational help. This would not have been possible without their support,” Raney said. “ I also wants to thank the organizations from across the region who came together to make the event happen – the Friends of Coal, the Coalition for Mountaintop Mining, the Logan Coal Vendors Association, Citizens for Coal, the Kentucky and Ohio coal associations, the Virginia Coal Association, the Coal Operators and Associates and the Eastern Coal Council.
“The next step is to build on this success and keep up the pressure. We have to make Washington understand they cannot continue to pursue these short-sighted policies that are hurtful to the Appalachian coal miner. We have to make them understand they can’t continue to play politics with the lives of our people and our communities.”

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