July 28, 2005

President of renegade union explains his decision to split from AFL-CIO

I recently received an e-mail from Purple Ocean.org, an organization affiliated with the Service Employees International Union, or SEIU, from their president Andy Stern which offers his explanation for why he recently pulled his union out of the AFL-CIO.

He writes:

"On Monday, SEIU made the difficult decision to leave the AFL-CIO, a federation of several U.S. labor organizations. SEIU, together with seven major unions representing 6 million workers, has formed the Change To Win Coalition, committed to helping millions more workers and their families to join our movement. Here are our reasons.

  • A country that once had 35 percent union membership is now down to 8 percent in the private sector. And the results are that workers have less health care, less time to spend with their families, less secure pensions in their retirement, but more debt and more insecurity about the future.

  • The American Dream has slipped out of reach for too many, and it's not enough just to talk about it. We need to take action. Over the last decade SEIU has helped over 900,000 new workers -- most of them people of color, immigrants, and working women -- to find strength and dignity by joining together.
Change To Win represents a move in the right direction, and we won't slow down for a second."
Not exactly a great explanation, nor specific reasons. I mean, the first one is simply explaining the sorry state of unions, and the second suggests that the AFL-CIO isn't taking enough action, but couldn't be more vague.

He goes on to detail a strike by janitors in Houston and to state that he welcomes people's feedback on his decision to withdraw from the AFL-CIO and to learn more at their blog at http://www.unitetowinblog.com


At 7/28/2005 3:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

congratulations, organized labor ... all this does is help the GOP!

At 8/01/2005 7:07 AM, Blogger diehard said...

I have news for you Anonymous. Orginized labor has been helping Republicans win for a while now.
If Sweeny cared about the movement he would have stepped down.
These guys are all about their fat salaries and not about the members.
I think the split is good!


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