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Introduction: Leftist at Work

We are excited to launch the Leftist @ Work column, which is a space for leftists to talk about the ways in which they organize in their workplace – whether it is how they talk with coworkers about political issues, how they are trying to build or revitalize a union, or how they orient their political perspectives to sync with their daily jobs. Some leftists find themselves confronting issues they didn’t expect would come up in their work.


Other people find that they work for a non-profit or union that constrains their range of political activities. We’ll hear from organizers that struggle to balance their radical politics with the realities of working for an organization with more of a reform orientation.

We’ll also hear from people who may work in an unionized workplace but try to bring their broader politics into the workplace – such as anti-racism, anti-war, or pro-immigrant rights.

We also want to hear from you! Send us your stories of how you practice your politics in your workplace. This is the place where many people spend the majority of their waking hours. How do we build our politics to create solidarity with co-workers, and use our leverage as workers, to build the kind of world we want to live in? Let us know how you do it, or the kinds of challenges you’ve faced along the way.

Labor Editors

Stephanie Luce is Associate Professor of Labor Studies and has gained national and international recognition for her research on living-wage campaigns and on the impact of globalization on jobs and workers.  She serves on the editorial board of New Labor Forum and is a moderator for Portside Labor.

Erica Smileyis a Senior Field Organizer for Jobs with Justice, with a focus on the southern region.  As a part of this position, she relates to southern JwJ coalitions and engages in strategic campaigns.  She is originally from Greensboro, North Carolina.

More in this category: Feminism at Work »

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