Labor

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2018 is the 50th Anniversary of 1968–the most decisive revolutionary year in during the Great Revolution of the Two Decades of the Sixties—1955-1975. In that year the Vietnamese National Liberation Front carried out a decisive political victory in its war against the U.S., Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated, urban rebellions rocked the U.S., president Lyndon Johnson refused to run for re-election under great national protests, students at Columbia University and the Paris student/worker rebellions shaped history. The Movement agreed the problem was “The System”, the Answer was “The Revolution” and the vehicle was “The Movement.” Today, U.S. society is disintegrating morally, economically, politically, ecologically, and spiritually. Black Lives Matter, The Dreamers, the Bernie/Warren Democrats, the Labor/Community Strategy Center and many other organizations are doing important work to fight the system but there is a need for more discussion about what is our strategy. Eric Mann will discuss “A Black/Latino/Third World United Front against the U.S. Imperialist White Settler State” as the strategy the Strategy Center is trying to carry out in its work in South L.A., Los Angeles, and the U.S. to shape grassroots organizing and movement building.
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LA
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A panel based on the new book from Monthly Review press featuring contributors Steve Early, Jon Flanders and others to be announced. There are lessons to be learned from the Wisconsin revolt. This timely book brings together some of the best labor journalists and scholars in the United States, many of whom were on the ground at the time, to examine the causes and impact of events, and suggest how the labor movement might proceed in this new era of union militancy.
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LA
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Putting the Movement Back Into Labor: The Trap of Contract Unionism
Location: 
LA
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This panel will offer an analysis of the reasons for labor's defeats and retreats since the 1980s and assess the potential for Occupy to help spur a new workers' movement.
Location: 
LA
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This panel will explore the relationship between the Occupy movement, especially in New York, and labor, organized and unorganized. This panel will discuss the history of this relationship, which predates the actual occupation of Zuccotti Park. it will touch on the dynamics and high points of that relationship, such as the protection of the park by members of unions and the united May Day march in 2011. It will also discuss grass-roots labor organizing efforts that have been going on for several years, which the Occupy movement has been working with, such as that of the Hot and Crusty workers, who, under the auspices of the Laundry Workers Center, won an important victory last year. Members of the panel will include Eleanor Rodgers of Occupy Kensington and Socialist Alternative, Oscar Ramirez and Maggy Crecencio from the Laundry Workers Center and Greg Dunkel, a long-term member of the Occupy Wall Street Labor Outreach Committee
Location: 
LA
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A panel on rank-and-file movements in New York among public sector and private sectors workers with representatives of four different unions or workers organizations. The panel discusses rank-and-file activism within the context of the unions and political developments.
Location: 
LA
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In 2011, 45,000 members of the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) employed by Verizon in eight states and the District of Columbia staged a two-week work stoppage to resist contract concessions. This strike was the second largest anywhere in the country in the last decade, and ended without a settlement. After strikers returned to work, they continued their contract campaign for another year before ratifying a new agreement that ended defined benefit pension coverage for new hires and made other concessions to a firm making $20 billion in profits during the previous four years Three Verizon strikers, and two longtime CWA-IBEW strike helpers—Amy Muldoon, Pat Fahy, Justin Harrison, Steve Early, Rand Wilson--and will discuss the lessons of this setback for telecom workers and other union members. Their session will describe recent trends in the telecom industry that make effective strikes more difficult, the challenge of organizing the unorganized at Verizon Wireless (and other non-union firms), and strategies and tactics that might make future IBEW-CWA contract campaigns more effective. The panel will also address recent trends toward shorter duration, one- or two-day protest strikes by workers in other industries, including healthcare, fast food, and retailing (ie Walmart). Co-Chairs: Steve Early and Rand Wilson.
Location: 
LA
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The four-year drive from 2006 until 2010 to win passage of the Employee Free Choice Act was the single largest union-backed campaign in decades. While EFCA died in Congress, the need to make it easier for workers to organize is as important as ever. But to win next time, reform must be conceived more broadly so that it benefits all workers – not just the few seeking to form a union. What new legislative opportunities and organizing approaches could address the obstacles to recruiting new members and help with a rebirth of the labor movement?
Location: 
LA
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Description: 
At its peak in 1954 over 1 in 3 workers were members of trade unions and US workers had one of the highest standard of living. Today Union membership has dropped down to 11% and the standard of living has deteriorated significantly. What can we do to organize the unorganized and how do we take back unions that "have" either given up or "sold out"?