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Another Crossroads for Immigration Reform Strategy and Tactics

New Orleans    Rich Trumka of the AFL-CIO lambasted the Republican “principles” on immigration reform as a non-starter virtually creating a permanent apartheid of immigrants inside the country.  There was a time when the vigorousness of labor’s opposition would have signaled the death of such a bill.  This time though President Obama was encouraging to the Republicans, [...]

Organizing Strategy Based on Solidarity and Power

Houston   Thinking about various strategies to rebuild the labor movement is a painful pastime for many organizers, but talking to Peter Olney, the organizing director for the International Longshoremen & Warehouse Union, the fabled 60,000 West Coast dockworkers’ powerhouse, on my weekly radio show recently was a good primer on the basics for holding your [...]

UAW Transplants Potential, not Worker Centers, Best News for Organized Labor

New Orleans  Reports on the closing of the AFL-CIO quadrennial convention in Los Angeles were depressing to me.   Sure, I liked hearing Rich Trumka almost endorse my long standing call for “majority unionism” by saying labor needed “to build a movement not for the 99 percent but of the 99 percent.  Not just the 11 [...]

AFL-CIO’s Membership Expansion Largely Symbolic

New Orleans  By a voice vote the AFL-CIO delegates in convention approved a resolution to expand the membership to other groups.   The measure appears to be largely a symbolic gesture about buildinga larger coalition for political issues and defense against attacks against working families, rather than a real effort to reverse the long decline [...]

New Strategy at AFL-CIO or Same Ol’, Same Ol’?

New Orleans    I watched a brief interview for USA Today with Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO, on the eve of their coming convention, as he argued that with the diminishing numbers, there were changes coming at the federation.   The changes he talked about mainly were some kind of broader affiliation program that was enrolling [...]

Reading the Tea Leaves on Huge SEIU-NUHW Decert in California

New Orleans  First come the disclaimers.   I have no stomach for this 5 year saga in California that has created a huge rift in the labor movement as folks picked sides between the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the National Union of Healthcare Workers’  (NUHW).  Depending on how you line up, NUHW is either [...]