CommonBound Track: "Building a 21st Century Labor Movement"

From the fight for the 8 hour day to the sit-down strikes that ushered in the New Deal, worker organizing has always played a central role in envisioning and building an economy that works for everyone.

Yet today, unions find themselves on the defensive, struggling to respond effectively to coordinated attacks and the structural challenges of globalization, automation, and an economy pushing up against ecological limits. This track will explore some of the most dynamic strategies being employed to build a visionary labor movement for the 21st century.

Participants will hear from leaders in unions and worker centers incubating worker and union co-operatives, gain insight into building power with community and environmental justice groups, learn tools demanding transformative reforms, and much more.

We are organizers exploring new models for worker organizing in the 21st century. We are looking for your great successes -- and your great failures too. Are you working to create a new vision for worker justice and organizing? Have you invested in new models that worked? Have you taken risks that failed, but taught you valuable lessons in how the labor movement can and should be innovating right now?

We want to hear from you. We want your case studies about new co-op and hybrid union models. We want your lessons learned from attempting to harness new technology and new democratic forms to build worker power. We want your visionary ideas for what worker organizing can look like as things like the on-demand economy change the landscape of work. We want to know about how these models can scale and grow beyond small-scale pilot projects, and about unlikely alliances and intersectional approaches to labor and worker organizing.

Together, let’s explore how labor turns the tide and balances the scales for workers in the 21st century.

If you are making a proposal to do a panel session, please make clear your diversity goals for representation on the panel.

For more information, please contact mpeck [at]

Coordinated By:

  • Michael Peck, 1worker1vote / Mondragon
  • Kati Sipp, National Guestworker Alliance
  • Rachel LaBruyere,
  • Kevin Christensen, AFL-CIO

Propose a Session