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A United Labor Movement: Together We're Stronger

Resolution: 71A-09-01

Approved: June 22, 2009


This is a time of great opportunity for our labor movement. For the first time in decades we have the promise of real change, restored bargaining rights through the Employee Free Choice Act, real health care reform, and the start of rebuilding our economy and building a society where workers have a place at the table. 

It has never been more important for the union movement to be united so that we can fully take advantage of these opportunities. Together, we are stronger. That is true for those of us within CWA and true for the entire labor movement.  

All of us -- AFL-CIO unions, Change to Win (CTW) unions, and the National Education Association (NEA) -- worked together to elect President Obama and Vice President Biden; a House of Representatives with a Speaker and strong majority that support working families; and a Senate that gives us the first real opportunity in years to advance needed legislation without the threat of filibuster. 

The historic accomplishments of Labor 2008 showed what we can achieve working together. In many ways, that success bolstered the effort to achieve labor reunification that already was underway.

CWA has been a leader in this effort to bring unity to our labor movement. The process has encouraged and advanced substantive discussion by leading unions in the AFL-CIO and Change to Win, the two federations, and especially important, the National Education Association, all with the goal of moving toward a united labor movement.

The National Education Association (NEA), with more than three million members, is an important ally in everything we do. The NEA already has been working with central labor councils and other union organizations. A united labor movement, with NEA as a full partner, can only increase our effectiveness in states and communities and enable a united movement that is 16 million members strong to speak with a single voice.  

Together, we are stronger, whether we are working in communities, through local labor councils, lobbying state legislatures, or taking our message to Congress and the Administration.

The first steps are underway. In April 2009, the AFL-CIO, Change to Win, and the NEA established a National Labor Coordinating Committee with representatives from each organization, which has been meeting and working toward unification and for passage of the Employee Free Choice Act.  

There is more work to do to reach our goal. We need a labor movement that can speak and act nationally on the critical issues facing working Americans, one that will create the political and economic climate that enables working families to thrive.

Resolved:  That we are in a unique moment in history, having elected a president and vice president who support workers, as well as a House of Representatives and Senate with majority support for the Employee Free Choice Act.

Resolved:  To change our nation and create a society in which workers have a real voice and a seat at the table, we must change ourselves. That means exploring new ways of working together with the AFL-CIO, Change To Win, and National Education Association, and new ways of supporting each others’ campaigns. 

Resolved:  CWA leadership on every level will work together wherever possible with the AFL-CIO, Change to Win, and the NEA.

Resolved:  CWA leadership continues to participate in discussions to reunite the AFL-CIO, Change to Win and NEA with the goal of creating a unified labor movement that advances the interests of all working families.

Resolved:  We urge CWA locals to move similar bold Labor Unity resolutions in their Central Labor Councils and State Federations, building the house of labor to a strength that cannot be ignored.