On strike, locked out, and legislated back to work, postal workers have experienced first hand the bosses’ agenda of taking away rights workers fought for decades ago. Because postal workers are not alone in facing cutbacks, exploitation, greedy bosses, and the like, we have a lot in common with other workers, and we stand to learn a lot from each others’ struggles. The rules of the game are changing, and workers will have to start taking matters into our own hands instead of relying on elected officials in our unions or governments to make wise decisions for us.
This talk will outline a perspective on workplace organizing that is not dependent on union executives but rather on empowering workers to fight their own battles. It will suggest why it’s important to deal with issues as they arise on the floor with direct action rather than relying on formal grievances or legal complaints. It will draw from experiences with boots to the ground organizing that is directed from the rank and file and prioritizes direct action, worker education, and participatory decision making to build the kind of struggle that can aim for the whole pie, not just a bigger piece.
A postal worker, anarchist, and rank and file trouble maker, Rachel Stafford has been organizing to build worker power within and outside of the post office. Applying skills and perspectives developed as a member of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), she has organized for direct action at her job and supported others as a trainer in the IWW’s Organizer Training program. Rachel writes about and reflects on her experiences as a member of the editorial collective of the Recomposition blog.
Saturday, October 22, 7pm
Spectator Auditorium, 44 Frid St.
Sunday, October 23, 7pm
Steelworkers Hall, 25 Cecil Street