Family Values @ Work is Joining Forces with Labor Project!May 8, 2013
Ten years ago, Netsy Firestein and I were working out in a swimming pool at a conference in Orlando. For months following California’s win on paid family leave, we’d been talking about how to make sure funds got directed to the grassroots organizing necessary to win change. That day in the pool, we decided to create a new model of state coalitions banding together to raise money and share it, along with sharing strategies, messaging, and inspiration. The coalitions would have to be diverse, we agreed – and labor would have to be a key partner.
That was the birth of Family Values @ Work Consortium. And from the beginning, Labor Project for Working Families helped each state strengthen the involvement and visibility of labor’s role in our campaigns.
That’s why we’re delighted that the Labor Project for Working Families has chosen Family Values @ Work as the place to house its national work.
For two decades, the Labor Project has been a leader on work and family issues, supporting labor unions in collective bargaining and engaging both unions and their members with coalitions working to advance and implement policies such as family leave, paid sick days and worker-controlled job flexibility. This work has been vital to every one of our campaigns and has improved the lives of millions of men and women across the country.
Beginning July 1, The Labor Project will join forces with Family Values @ Work nationally and expand efforts to win these important policies.
Building on Labor Project’s pioneering work to support union bargaining on work and family issues and to strengthen alliances between labor and community coalitions focused on these issues, the national work and union resources of Labor Project will become a project of Family Values @ Work, our nationwide network of state coalitions organizing in 21 states. Under the excellent leadership of Carol Joyner, Labor Project will deepen labor’s involvement in the grassroots movements that are winning change at the local level and creating momentum for new federal minimum standards. The Labor Project website and union resources, including its contract language database, will be housed with Family Values @ Work.
The California coalition that Labor Project has led will also continue, partnering with Next Generation to shepherd that work under the continued leadership of Jenya Cassidy. We’re thrilled to have them as one of our member groups.
Strengthening grassroots coalitions through the involvement of local labor unions has led to a record stretch of wins on paid sick days and family leave in cities and states across the country. The Labor Project for Working Families has been critical in making these connections. We’re honored to house this work as we enter the next phase.
Fortunately for all of us, Netsy Firestein will still be connected to the work in numerous ways. We hail her robust career, her many wins and her multiple gifts, which we intend to draw on for years to come.