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​Internal Politics of Organizing

Throughout labor, local unions see organizing through a wide prism. Some leaders have fully integrated organizing capabilities with an educated membership. Other locals treat organizing as the “red headed stepchild” or keep it off the membership’s radar screen. Still other locals barely, if at all, try to organize and have many reasons/excuses for failure. 

Labor Combat Organizing College graciously received from six urban Building Trades Councils the annual total of all pickets they were notified about. Labor Combat Organizing College divided the number of locals with jurisdiction in those respective Building Trades Councils into the annual total and calculated that the average number of pickets per local was 8 during the calendar year of 2010. While this may be an unreliable sample and conclusion, these numbers are indicative of our activity level and may go a long way to explain why Organized Labor can’t raise its market share. Surely many factors (e.g., legislation, 1099, OSHA, Right To Work, etc…) influence organizing. But at the end of the day, it may be our own internal politics that most hinder our success. Brothers & sisters, regardless of our own differences we have to start kicking some ass across the board. That tidal wave will lift all boats.

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