Building Bridges: Your Community and Labor Report
Produced by Ken Nash and Mimi Rosenberg
The Janus Attack â Donât Mourn, Organize and Fightback
Kimberly Bowsky Goldbaum, Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) rank and
file activist, Member of CTU Executive Board and House of Delegates,
Member of Chicago AFT Black Caucus, and the Caucus of Rank and File
Chris Brooks, Staff Writer and Organizer with Labor Notes magazine.
Most recently co-author, A Labor Notes Guide: Power in Open-Shop
The generations long right wing campaign funded by corporate donors to
destroy U.S. unions won another victory in the Supreme Courtâs Janus v.
AFSCME ruling in which it's five-man Republican-named majority lowered the
boom on unions representing state and local government workers, declaring
every single such worker in the country a âfree rider,â able to take union services
without paying one red cent for them. Some fear a financial death sentence for
public sector unions and massive loses in membership . In addition the right is
poised to reach out to union members by mass mailings, ad campaigns and
robo calls to quit the union and to extend this ruling by additional legislative
and judicial action to further weaken unions.
The looming threat of Janus had forced many unions to try to reconnect to their
membership base. But while this was a first step, Chris Brooks argues that
much more needs to be done to rebuild unions after Janus. We'll ask Kimberly
Bowsky Goldbaum, an African American rank and file activist in the Chicago
Teachers Union how they built an astonishingly 99% membership rate.
According to Chris Brooks .Itâs getting back to basics. "Prospective members
will be won by deeds. A unionâs power rests on how many workers will act
together and how strong an action they will take. " Our guests will analyze our
challenge with the experience of CTU and other public and private sector
workers unions in right to work states to explore strategy and tactics to
democratize and reinvigorate unions in the Janus era and by reaching out to
and forming alliances with other progressive struggles which are also under
attack by our common enemies in these perilous times.
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