Help EWOC Raise $30K by December 31st! 💵
As we approach the end of the year, we’ve set an ambitious goal of raising $30,000 to keep EWOC strong and growing in 2024. We also have a special promotion to announce! We’ll send “Workers Deserve More” hats to the next 30 people who donate $75 or more.
Upcoming Events 🗓
January Foundational Training for New Organizers!
Make it your new year’s resolution to organize your workplace and join EWOC in our next Foundational Training program. In four 90-minute, weekly sessions, you’ll learn how to approach your co-workers, build a team of organizers among them, and develop a campaign. You will meet other workers who are organizing and learn helpful tools, practices, and principles for winning workplace improvements and getting a democratic voice over your working conditions. Join the Emergency Workplace Organizing Committee’s Foundational Training Series, Wednesdays starting on January 10 at 8 p.m. ET. Sign up here!
Su serie de capacitación de enero también se ofrecerá en español
Si quieres organizar tu lugar de trabajo pero no sabes por dónde empezar, esta capacitación es para ti. En cuatro sesiones de 90 minutos, aprende cómo acercar a tus compañeros de trabajo, juntar un equipo de organizadores entre ellos y desarrollar una campaña organizadora. Vas a conocer a otros trabajadores quienes están organizando, aprender herramientas, prácticas y principios útiles para lograr mejoras en tu lugar de trabajo y conseguir una voz democrática sobre las condiciones laborales.
Participa en el Serie de Capacitación Fundamental del Comité para la Organización Laboral de Emergencia (EWOC), los Miércoles desde 10 enero hasta 31 enero a las 8 p.m. ET (5 p.m. PT). ¡Regístrese para la serie de capacitaciones!
Workshop: What To Do When Your Union Breaks Your Heart Foundational Training for New Organizers!
This workshop will be led by Labor Notes board member Ellen David Friedman and is based on this article. The first meeting was held on Tuesday, Dec. 5, from 7:30–9 p.m. ET (4:30–6 p.m. PT). The workshop will be offered on a monthly basis, so stay tuned for next month’s event. This is an online workshop and will be held via Zoom. Registration is FREE.
The Inside Organizer School
Jan. 19–21 in Arlington, Virginia
Hosted by Northern Virginia Labor Federation in Shirlington Village, this is a great in-person training opportunity for any worker-organizers or campaigns in the Virginia and Washington, D.C. area. Call (703) 627-5510 or email [email protected] for information about registering and scholarship opportunities.
Labor Spring 2024
You may remember Labor Spring this past year, where various groups organized more than 70 events on college campuses and other places to discuss the labor movement. It will happen again next year, with likely more events! EWOC volunteers and workers may be interested in attending and can also plan events as part of this. More info here!
2023 saw a great deal of media attention given to labor unions due to a confluence of government involvement, waves of relentless strike activity, a shift in public support, and global protests for peace, despite the usual attempts by corporations to squash our grassroots movement.
Early in the year, a train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio, was the literal manifestation of a figurative train wreck in Washington, D.C. The rail workers and residents of East Palestine were utterly betrayed by the White House, who sold out workers and the environmental clean-up efforts to lobbyists and rail barons. In the spring, Starbucks faced a public reckoning when Howard Schultz was asked to testify in front of Congress to answer for his company’s brutal union-busting tactics. After years of seeing a rise in hundreds of union shops across the country, Starbucks Workers United is stronger than ever and continues to strengthen worker-led organizing.
At the same time, legacy unions such as the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) and United Auto Workers (UAW) experienced a seismic shake-up during their recent election cycles. Their rank-and-file members voted for new leadership, headed by Sean O’Brien and Shawn Fain with a mandate for fewer concessions, more militancy, and an adversarial stance during negotiations. At EWOC, we hosted leaders from UAWD and TDU activists for a discussion of their plans to win their contracts. Watch here: Building a Fighting Labor Movement: A conversation with UAWD and TDU activists
This set the stage for a summer of strike activity beginning with the WGA and heating up to include SAG-AFTRA and the UAW. EWOC spoke to Adam Conover, a leading organizer and member of the WGA about the ongoing writers’ strike and the existential threat that AI has posed over every industry, not just entertainment. Watch here: The Writers Guild Strike feat. Adam Conover
Underpinning these larger strikes were rumblings of organizing across other industries: the tech industry at VFX and IATSE, culinary and hospitality workers in Las Vegas, service industry workers at LAX, healthcare workers at Kaiser, flight attendants at American Airlines, and the list goes on. Several of these unions refused to cross each others’ picket lines, standing in solidarity with one another.
After a number of historic wins this fall, which included a sweeping victory for autoworkers due to the UAW’s ingenious Stand Up Strike, paired with public support swinging towards workers and a couple of National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rulings making it easier to unionize, we realized the power of rank-and-file members joining in protest, withholding our labor, and rallying for peace. In a convergence of global solidarity fueled by an influx of our voices, the UAW became the largest U.S. union to endorse the call for a ceasefire, along with numerous other rank-and-file local unions. This is what a radical labor movement looks like! We have the power to protest for peace and fight for a better world when we lift each other up. It’s clearer than ever that solidarity among workers is a bond that surpasses global boundaries.
World of Work 🌍
The UAW launched the largest union organizing drive in U.S. history. The fight isn’t over! UAW is coming for Tesla, Toyota, and other non-union shops.
Local unions continue to publish resolutions in support of a ceasefire in Gaza. Read the UE Local 8515 ceasefire resolution.
“There Has Never Been Less Tolerance for This”: Inside a New York Times Magazine Writer’s Exit Over Gaza Letter. Numerous labor rights violations can be found in this story of the New York Times Magazine forcing out a journalist for signing a letter in support of Palestine.
The union drive at Chinese for Affirmative Action, a nonprofit organization that operates under three different names (see below), went public with 72% of the vote. They’re unionizing with CWA Local 9415.
REI is accused of widespread labor law violations at unionized U.S. stores. Workers at stores across the country filed a total of 80 complaints with the NLRB seeking to force the company to bargain with their union.
Story in The Indypendent about Hex Workers United’s union win. You can also read our own profile blog about the Hex&Co campaign: Hex Workers United: A Profile In Grassroots Organizing
Richmond Teachers Union is hiring a labor and community organizer. Please apply if you’re interested and share widely within your networks!
Laney Graduate Students Vote to Unionize, making Emory University the first private university to have a graduate-worker union in Georgia. EmoryUnite! is now officially recognized as a union under the NLRB.
Former treasurer of the Amazon Labor Union, Connor Pence, has been unjustly terminated by Amazon. Stand in support of his activism and organizing efforts.
New from Our Blog and Other Labor Resources 💻
We’d like to spotlight a few recent blog posts and resources that we didn’t get a chance to showcase in the past.
- Hex Workers United: A Profile in Grassroots Organizing: Follow the journey of an EWOC campaign from intake to union win.
- OSHA is a great resource for workers — but it’s no replacement for organizing: Find out if OSHA can help with your workplace concerns or if you need something more.
- Ingredients of Alienation: The Emergence of Trader Joe’s United: An inside look at the beloved liberal market that became the locus for a grassroots union effort.
- The Future of Work(ers): Building Collective Power in the Era of Remote Work: Organizing in the brave new world of tech and remote work.
Week in Labor History 📚
December 15, 1967: The U.S. Age Discrimination in Employment Act becomes law. It bars employment discrimination against anyone aged 40 or older.