Monday, May 11, 2009

Public Sector Case Study

Paraprofessionals - the hard working, in-classroom educational employees who support, assist, and enhance teaching - are among the most mistreated employees in public employment. They have as much direct contact with students and the educational process as teachers do, yet are usually paid less than custodians, bus drivers, and food service workers.

This is a story of how a union of paraprofessionals in Connecticut developed a contract campaign using the organizing, power-based model - and built a whole new union in the process.

You can read the whole story here.

Disclaimer: the union in this story is the United Electrical, Radio, and Machine Workers (UE). I started my union career as a field organizer for UE. Maybe that's where I got all my crazy ideas about union democracy, leadership development, and worker power.