Spotlight on Committees: To protect ourselves, we need to get stronger
Join a local union committee to make your local ready for the work ahead
It’s a question many UAW members are asking themselves after the 2016 election that put many candidates in office who have records that run counter to what we believe as union members.
There are public officials, both elected and appointed, who have plans that can weaken the entire labor movement and specifically the UAW.
They can only succeed if we do nothing. We’ve never been a union that accepts that we cannot change minds of elected officials and others, no matter what party holds power. To do so, we must be stronger and more united than ever before.
The way to build the stronger and more united union that we need to address the upcoming challenges is through the standing committees of our 600-plus locals. Strong, working committees make strong locals. Strong locals get things done in their communities and states. They also support the work of UAW regional offices and the International Union when it comes to broader issues.
“The standing committees are where the real work of the local unions gets done,” said UAW President Dennis Williams. “No union should rely on a handful of active members to do all of the heavy lifting. We need all hands on deck to accomplish the many tasks that our local unions must complete. That’s how we build strong unions. Strong unions get things done in their communities, educate the public about important issues, look out for the less fortunate and play an active role in the life of the community. This participation is vital to make our voices heard not only by public officials, but to the general public, too.”
According to Article 44 of the UAW Constitution, local unions are required to have the following standing committees:
- Constitution and Bylaws
- Union Label
- Conservation and Recreation
- Community Services
- Civil and Human Rights
- Citizenship and Legislative
- Consumer Affairs
- Other committees as deemed necessary
In future issues, Solidarity will detail the work of these committees and how they fit into the local union, the community, the labor movement and the national debate.