District Council 16-Northern California, Nevada
On October 21, 2015, the AFL-CIO Commission on Racial and Economic Justice met at Allen Temple Baptist Church in Oakland, California. IUPAT General President Kenneth Rigmaiden attended the meeting along with AFL-CIO Secretary Treasurer Liz Shuler and Art Pulaski, executive secretary of the California Labor Federation.
Over the next year, the AFL-CIO will launch a Labor Commission on Racial and Economic Justice, comprising members of the AFL-CIO’s Executive Council, which will facilitate a broad conversation with local labor leaders around racial and economic disparities and institutional biases, and identify ways to become more inclusive as the new entrants to the labor force diversify.
This includes six to eight labor discussions around the country, addressing racial and economic issues impacting the labor movement and offering recommendations for change. Participants in the process will include local labor leaders, constituency groups and young workers. The commission will be assisted by an advisory council made up of experts.
The goal of the commission is to create a safe, structured and constructive opportunity for local union leaders to discuss issues pertaining to the persistence of racial injustice today in the workforce and in their communities, and to ensure that the voices of all working people in the labor movement are heard. The results of the commission will lead to reports and tools to transform how we think about racial justice issues, and to providing the tools to support these discussions at the city and state levels.