Labor & Electoral Politics: What Does It Take For Union Members To Win?

Host/Sponsor: 
Richmond Progressive Alliance, Left Elect
Room: 
1.117
Timeslot: 
SUNDAY June 4th Session 6: 12:00pm - 1:50pm
Abstract: 
In 2016, a shockingly large percentage of voters in union households failed to support the presidential candidate endorsed by their national unions and the AFL-CIO. The electoral college victory of Donald Trump has forced some labor organizations to re-examine their approach to electoral politics at the local, state, and national level. This panel/workshop will discuss what unions can do to better engage their members in political action, either around issue-oriented campaigns or electoral races involving labor-backed candidates. A particular focus will be how to tap the energy and enthusiasm of younger workers, from minority communities, who have been drawn to politics in recent years by Occupy, Black Lives Matters, the Fight for Fifteen, or the immigrant rights movement.
Panel Track: 
"How Can the Left work better together?" "What success will look like?"
Reading List: 
Refinery Town: Big Oil, Big Money, and the Remaking of An American City (Beacon Press, January 2017) by Steve Early. Our Revolution by Bernie Sanders. Empowering Progressive Third Parties in the United States, edited by Jonathan Martin.
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker First Name: 
Steve
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Last Name: 
Early
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Affiliation: 
Richmond Progressive Alliance, NewsGuild/CWA, Democratic Socialists of America, Solidarity, CCDS
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Biography: 
Steve Early was a CWA national union organizer and representative in the northeast for nearly 30 years. In New England, he was a supporter of the Vermont Progressive Party and the Working Families Party. in 2015, he helped build the Labor for Bernie network. He is the author of three books about labor and, most recently, "Refinery Town: Big Oil, Big Money, and the Remaking of an American City" (Beacon Press, 2017), which reports on the electoral success and community organizing victories of a northern California community-labor coalition called the Richmond Progressive Alliance.
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator First Name: 
Jesse
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Last Name: 
Campoamor
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Affiliation: 
Labor Campaign Strategist/Political Consultant
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Biography: 
Jesse Campoamor served as a lead political organizer for 1199SEIU and member of Manhattan Community Board 4. He co-founded “Purple Gold,” a young worker engagement program for 1199SEIU and worked on the Obama for President campaign in 2008, Bill de Blasio’s 2009 race for Public Advocate, and Eric Schneiderman’s 2010 race for Attorney General. In 2012, he coordinated a campaign staff of 100 as SEIU’s Florida Deputy State Director for Obama. In 2014, he served as Campaign Manager for Adriano Espaillat’s congressional campaign and has served as Director of Community Affairs for NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer.
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator First Name: 
Nelini
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Last Name: 
Stamp
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Affiliation: 
Working Families Party
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Biography: 
Nelini Stamp is the National Membership Director at the Working Families Party. She works with volunteer leaders across the country to build local progressive infrastructure. Nelini joined the New York Working Families Party staff in 2008; door knocking and field organizing for a variety of electoral campaigns across New York State. Since then, Nelini has been deeply involved in social movement work around economic and racial justice across the country. She worked on the ground at Occupy Wall Street to help bridge the gap between labor, community- based organizations and Occupy activists. Afterward, Nelini co-created the Freedom Side and co-founded Dream Defenders in Florida, which organizes and trains youth in non-violent civil disobedience, civic engagement, and direct action. Lately, as a co-builder of WFP's Resist Here project, which launched #ResistTrumpTuesdays, she has been chasing Senator Schumer around to make sure he stands up to Trump. You can often find her leading marches, rallies and mic-checking at direct actions.
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator First Name: 
Mike
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator Last Name: 
Parker
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator Affiliation: 
Richmond Progressive Alliance
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator Biography: 
Mike Parker is a leader of the Richmond Progressive Alliance in Richmond CA. He was its candidate for Mayor in 2014, dropping out for another candidate as part of a coalition to defeat Chevron’s multi-million dollar attempt to take the city council. He then became the campaign coordinator for the successful Team Richmond campaign. Mike worked in the auto industry in Detroit as an electrician and trainer in new technology. He is on the Labor Notes Policy Committee and has coauthored (with Martha Gruelle) Democracy is Power and (with Jane Slaughter) Working Smart: A Union Guide to Participation Programs and Reengineering published by Labor Notes.
Panel/Workshop Organizer First Name: 
Steve
Panel/Workshop Organizer Last Name: 
Early
Panel/Workshop Organizer Affiliation: 
Richmond Progressive Alliance, NewsGuild/CWA, Democratic Socialists of America

Left Forum and LA Progressive
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