On Pace for the Biggest Labor Notes Conference Yet

Labor Notes Conference bring together thousands of union members, officers, and labor activists who are on the front lines in our workplaces and our communities. Photo: Jim West

With less than two months to go, we’re happy to report that we’re on pace for the biggest Labor Notes Conference yet. We hope to see you in Chicago, April 6-8—and that you’ll be coming with a group!

Labor Notes Conferences are the biggest gatherings of grassroots union activists, worker center leaders, and all-around troublemakers out there. This year we’ll again have more than 100 workshops. Labor Notes staff is working diligently to put the finishing touches on the conference program, which we expect to put online by mid-March (for a glimpse of what the conference is like, check out the 2016 program). As always, we’ve lined up speakers from the frontlines of recent struggles, including:

  • Verizon workers who struck for 49 days and proved corporate giants can be beat
  • Lipton Tea factory workers who unionized in right-to-work Virginia
  • Tennessee campus workers who defeated a billionaire governor’s plan to privatize their jobs
  • Immigrant workers fighting to organize their workplaces and planning May Day strikes
  • Missouri union members who helped get 300,000 signatures and halt a right-to-work law in its tracks
  • Puerto Rican teachers fighting to keep their schools open in the wake of Hurricane Maria

Other highlights include:

  • International guests from two dozen countries, including Colombia, Honduras, Mexico, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Liberia, China, Hong Kong, Germany, and the UK
  • Workshops with artist Ricardo Levins-Morales on Creative Tactics and Strategic Mischief
  • Massachusetts Teachers Association President Barbara Madeloni on how her union is preparing for Janus
  • Workshops with labor lawyer Robert Schwartz, author of The Legal Rights of Union Stewards
  • Labor Notes co-founder Kim Moody on his new book, On New Terrain: How Capital Is Reshaping the Battleground of Class War
  • Sarah Jaffe and Michelle Chen recording a special episode of the Belabored podcast

We’ll also have meetups for union activists from various industries, including telecom, manufacturing, higher education, K-12 education, building trades… You get the gist.



Give $10 a month or more and get our "Fight the Boss, Build the Union" T-shirt.

Register by February 23 to get $45 off with our early bird discount. Visit labornotes.org/2018 for more details and to register.

Looking to raise funds to bring a delegation? You might consider following the example of the Longshore Workers (ILWU) Local 23 Young Workers Committee, which raised $1,300 for the group’s trip to the Conference by selling home-smoked pulled pork and sloppy Joes. In the Bay Area, enthusiastic Labor Notes supporters held a dance party and raised $6,000 for scholarships. And in Portland, a committee of Labor Notes stalwarts organized a brunch to help fund local activists.

See you in Chicago, troublemakers!

Dan DiMaggio is assistant editor of Labor Notes.dan@labornotes.org