Oregon Virtual Troublemakers School

Event Date: 
May 14, 2021
A group of Amazon solidarity activists pose for a photo with their fist raised. Some hold signs that read "Put Workers First," "Amazon Workers Need a Union," and "Solidarity Forever."

Event at a Glance


May 14, 2021, 5:00 pm





Conference Flyer

Friday, May 14 to Sunday, May 16
Presented by the NW Labor Notes Organizing Committee
Register at the bottom of this page.
Full agenda now available—see below.

Join union members and other local labor and community activists for a weekend of online skill-building workshops, education, and strategy discussions to put some movement back in the labor movement.

Schedule: The school will run from 5pm to 7pm PDT on Friday, May 14, and 10am to 3pm PDT on Saturday and Sunday, May 15-16.

Location: Online, via Zoom.

Cost: $10 to register. For $25, you can register and get a half-price one-year subscription to the Labor Notes monthly magazine. No one will be turned away due to lack of funds.

Troublemakers Schools are mini-conferences that cover organizing skills and highlight real-world examples of taking on the boss—and winning. Whether you’re new to union activism or are an experienced labor activist, there’s something there for you!

See this report from two activists on a recent virtual Troublemakers School in Western Massachusetts for an example of what to expect.

For more information, contact labornotespdx[at]gmail[dot]com.

Affiliations listed for identification purposes only.

FRIDAY, MAY 14, 5-7 pm PDT

1. The Labor Movement’s Way Forward
With Bill Fletcher, Jr. and Fernando Gapasin, co-authors of Solidarity Divided: The Crisis in Organized Labor and a New Path toward Social Justice.

2. PERS Is Not the Problem! How to Fix Oregon’s Budget Without Cutting Public Pensions 
Common sense solutions to our state funding shortfall.  A presentation by Mark Brenner, a faculty member at the University of Oregon Labor Education and Research Center and co-author of Labor Notes' Secrets of a Successful Organizer.

SATURDAY, MAY 15, 10 am-12 pm PDT

1. Race and Labor: A Conversation with Bill Fletcher, Jr.
Bill Fletcher Jr. is a labor, racial justice, and international activist, journalist, and author. He is the executive editor of the web journal, The Global African Worker.

2. Assertive Grievance Handling
Learn how to expand the scope of grievances, organize and engage members in the grievance process, and gain tools for winning grievances and beating your boss. Don’t file and wait, file and fight!
Facilitators: Michelle Stadeli, teacher, Oregon Education Association Board Member; Evan Wickersham, Oregon Education Association UniServ Consultant

3. Beating Apathy
There is no such thing as apathy. It is up to us to talk with workers, identify issues, and use our collective power to win. This workshop gets us started.

SATURDAY, MAY 15, 1-3 pm PDT

1. Organizing Winning Strikes
Local leaders who built successful strikes discuss strike strategy, how they organized their co-workers and communities behind the strikes, what they were able to win, as well as the legal nuts and bolts of the strike. Learn from a panel of local leaders who built successful strikes.
Panelists: Malori Musselman and Ellen Kress, American Association of University Professors-Oregon Institute of Technology
Kristine Mayle, Albuquerque Federation of Teachers, formerly with Chicago Teachers Union
Marj Hogan, teacher, Evergreen Education Association

2. Assembling Your Dream Team
What makes a good leader? How do we bring workers into organizing activities? This workshop focuses on identifying leaders and building worksite communication / activism networks.

SUNDAY, MAY 16, 10 am-12 pm PDT

1. Engaging New Employees In the Union
Learn best practices on signing up new employees to the union, strengthening your membership, engaging new members in the union, and engaging new members in bargaining and organizing.
Panelists: Richard Botterill, Chair, Providence Portland Medical Center Bargaining Unit, Oregon Nurses Association
Maureen Lundy, Klamath-Lake UniServ Council President, Oregon Education Association

2. Shifting Your Union Culture to be More Inclusive
Learn how union activists can promote solidarity on the job and in the union by addressing harassment, building a positive, pro-union worksite culture, changing our language and challenging assumptions.  
Panelists: Amber McCoy, Coordinator, Pacific Northwest Carpenters Institute
Myka Dubay, Union Representative, International Longshore & Warehouse Union, Local 5
Tori Geter, Coordinator, UA Local 290 Wellness Program

3. Turning an Issue into a Campaign
This workshop will focus on how to take a worksite issue and build an escalating campaign to win.

SUNDAY, MAY 16, 1-3 pm PDT

1. Sectoral/Industrial Meet-ups
Facilitated discussions about how we can build solidarity across the state within the industries/sectors where we are organizing and facing similar issues in our workplaces and with our employers.

2. Assembling Your Dream Team
What makes a good leader? How do we bring workers into organizing activities? This workshop focuses on identifying leaders and building worksite communication and activism networks.

Registration Details: