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How To Build Fierce And Worker-Centered Unions

In the early 2000s, UNITE was a small, scrappy union that put an immense amount of resources into new organizing. They had small teams of organizers who flew around the country and lived in hotels and motels and spent their life organizing. I think it’s really important for unions to be oriented in that way, to have just about every arm focused around new organizing and building the labor movement and having militant sites. At the same time, we have to really think critically about the role of organizers. Organizing can be such a science: We assess things, map workplaces, determine our tactics. Our tactics add up to be our strategy. It’s all very methodical and stripped of emotion. I write about standing up in front of the group and telling the story of the Triangle Shirtwaist fire, which is something organizers in UNITE get trained to tell.
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