Anti-Democratic Measures Defeated at AFL-CIO Convention – Press Booted from Sensitive Sessions of the AFL-CIO  – Labor Leaders Underwhelmed by New President Liz Shuler’s Approach to Organizing

President Joe Biden & AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler at AFL-CIO Convention (AFL-CIO)

Greetings from Philly, where Payday is wrapping up the last day of the AFL-CIO Convention. We got a lot of stories and story ideas out of this conference, which we’ll be publishing over the next week or two. 

Donate to help us cover our travel costs back to Pittsburgh tomorrow. 

Anti-Democratic Measures Defeated at AFL-CIO Convention 

At the beginning of the AFL-CIO Convention, several unions in the building trades were pushing for the controversial Amendment 8 opposed by many union democracy activists. The measure would have allowed the executive council of the AFL-CIO to change the constitution of the AFL-CIO by only a two-thirds vote of the 57-member executive council instead of the full support of the full 500-member constitutional convention.

However, after much pushback from union leaders, the measure was defeated in what union democracy activists see as a win. 

Press Booted from Sensitive Sessions of the AFL-CIO 

However, in a troubling move for union democracy and labor press freedom, reporters were booted from several sessions, including a discussion today of the AFL-CIO’s finances. 

As a labor reporter, I believe firmly that workers have a right to know everything that is happening within a labor organization. Freedom of the labor press is essential to providing union members with the necessary information to make decisions about their unions. 

In future years, Payday Report hopes that not just AFL-CIO, but all labor organizations do better in providing access to reporters. 

Labor Leaders Underwhelmed by New President Liz Shuler’s approach to Organizing 

Yesterday, Payday reported that Shuler had criticized the AFL-CIO’s approach to organizing. Today, veteran labor reporter Steven Greenhouse is out with a new piece in the Guardian where labor leaders criticize the AFL-CIO extensively. 

“We’re not in a place where the AFL-CIO is going to take the lead on the strategy for the next generation,” American Flight Attendants Association President Sara Nelson told Greenhouse.  “That means we’re not doing enough.”

Check out Greenhouse’s full piece in the Guardian. 

Alright folks, that’s all for now. We will have more from the convention in the coming days. 

Donate to help us cover our travel costs back to Pittsburgh. Finally, if you can, please sign up as one of our 696 recurring donors. 

Keep sending ideas, tips, suggestions, and comments to [email protected]. Thanks for all the support & suggestions. 

Love & Solidarity, 

Melk

About the Author

Mike Elk
A protege of Bill Greider, Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered the drug war in Brasil and spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian. In 2016, he used his NLRB settlement from being fired illegally for union organizing at Politico to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh, where he grew up in a UE union household. Email: [email protected]

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