The Common Good
September-October 1998

Resources and Organizations

by Kristin Brennan | September-October 1998

  • Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice (CLUE), 548 S. Spring St., Suite 630,
    Los Angeles, CA 90013; (213) 486-9880; CLUELA @Earthlink.net.
  • Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice
  • (CLUE), 548 S. Spring St., Suite 630, Los Angeles, CA 90013; (213) 486-9880; CLUELA @Earthlink.net. CLUE, working with the Southern California Ecumenical Council, has developed a principle for Religious Institutions and the Living Wage. It calls on religious institutions to pay all of their employees—including full-time, part-time, or contractees—a "living wage" and urges regional and religious bodies to help their constituent members implement this through administrative training, religious education, and financial planning. (See also pages 34-36.)
  • Farm Labor Organizing Committee,
  • 1221 Broadway St., Toledo, OH 43609; (419) 244-1265; fax: (419) 243-5665. FLOC focuses on improving work and living conditions for farmers and former farm workers as well as developing just compensation for work through self-organization, public actions, collective bargaining, and advocacy. FLOC encourages legislation for those who are excluded from labor legislation. (See also pages 42-43.)
  • Highlander Research and Education Center
  • , 1959 Highlander Way, New Market, TN 37820; (423) 933-3443. Highlander is a private, non-profit popular education center with a unique program of assisting activists and communities that seek solutions to pressing social problems. In conjunction with Jobs With Justice, Highlander recently hosted "Building a More Powerful Movement for Social Justice: Labor-Community-Religious Coalitions," a training focused on the right to organize and rank-and-file activism within the context of building coalitions with the religious community.
  • Jobs With Justice
  • : A Campaign for Worker's Rights, 501 Third St. NW, Washington, DC 20001-2797; (202) 434-1106. Founded in 1986, Jobs With Justice is a national campaign for human rights, dedicated to defending our standard of living, fighting for job security, and protecting our right to organize and strike. Local coalitions in communities across the country provide a national infrastructure of community, labor, and religious activists committed to broad-based mobilization campaigns. JWJ's Religious Action Kit on jobs, worker rights, and economic justice will be available September 1998. The kit will include worship and action-advocacy materials from a variety of faith-based organizations.
  • International Labor Rights Education and Research Fund (ILRF)
  • , 733 15th St. NW, Suite 920, Washington, DC 20005; (202) 347-4100; laborrights@igc.org. Founded in 1986, ILRF is a non-profit action and advocacy organization that uses new and creative means to encourage enforcement of international labor rights. ILRF takes legal and administrative actions on behalf of working people, creates innovative programs and enforcement mechanisms to protect workers' rights, and advocates for better protections for workers through publications, testimony before national and international hearings, and speeches to academic, religious, and human rights groups. For more information, visit ILRF's Web site at www.laborrights.org.
  • The Labor Institute
  • , 853 Broadway, Room 2014, New York, NY 10003; (212) 674-3322. For 20 years, the Labor Institute has produced training curricula and conducted research for unions, community groups, and government agencies on a wide range of subjects, including occupational safety and health, the environment and the economy, corporate power and American workers, and discrimination issues such as sexual harassment.
  • Labor Notes
  • , 7435 Michigan Ave., Detroit, MI 48210; (313) 842-6262; labornotes@labornotes.org. Instead of providing corporate-driven labor coverage in the mainstream press or the "official" union versions, Labor Notes offers the straight stories from the ranks of union members themselves about issues important to working people, offering a valuable resource for learning about the struggles, strategies, and solutions within the labor movement today. (See also page 40.)
  • Labor Heritage Foundation,
  • 1925 K St. NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20006; (202) 842-7880. This non-profit organization is dedicated to strengthening the labor movement through the use of music and the arts. Their most recent Catalogue of Music, Art, Books, & Video was released in July 1998.
  • Labor in the Pulpits
  • . This guide created by the Field Mobilization Department of the AFL-CIO and the National Interfaith Committee for Worker Justice is a manual for organizing a Labor Day weekend program in your faith community. It includes a wide range of worship resources, presentation aids for union speakers, sample press releases, and recruitment forms. Contact Regina Botterill, (773) 381-2832.
  • National Interfaith Committee on Worker Justice
  • , 1607 W. Howard, Suite 218, Chicago, IL 60626; (773) 381-2832. NICWJ is a network of 37 local groups, committed to educating and mobilizing the religious community on issues and campaigns to improve wages, benefits, and working conditions for workers, especially low-wage workers. NICWJ produces a bimonthly newsletter, Faith Works. (For information on their Seminary Track internship program, see page 26.)
  • People of Faith Network,
  • c/o Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church, 85 South Oxford St., Brooklyn, NY 11217; (718) 625-2819. People of Faith unites local congregations, clergy, and activists nationally to fight the growing inequality and mean-spiritedness that are linked to changes wrought by economic globalization. PFN seeks to win concrete advances through targeted campaigns and, in the process, to reinvigorate religious communities. A November 1996 Hard Copy video on Nicaraguan sweatshops, and Made in China: Behind the Label, a report by the National Labor Committee, are available through PFN. (See also page 31.)
  • Radcliffe Public Policy Institute
  • , Radcliffe College, 69 Brattle St., Cambridge, MA 02138; (617) 496-3478. Radcliffe Public Policy Institute's research project, "New Economic Equation," is an examination of economic and work change in America and effects on family and community life. A 27-page summary of the findings is available, as well as "The New Economic Equation 10-Step Guide," a pamphlet featuring 10 key steps for creating workplaces that reflect Americans' integrated work, family, and community responsibilities.
  • United Farm Workers
  • , 519 Main Street, Watsonville, CA 95076; (408) 763-4820; www.ufw.org. The mission of the UFW is to promote and create economic independence for agricultural and agricultural-related workers through the collective bargaining process. UFW focuses on empowering workers, developing and implementing comprehensive contract campaigns, and providing a viable means for donors and supporters to participate in nonviolent social action. (For information on UFW's strawberry workers' campaign, see page 48.)
  • United For a Fair Economy, 37 Temple Place, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02111; (617) 423-2148; www.stw.org; stw@stw.org. A national organization founded in 1994 to focus public attention and action on economic inequality in the United States, United For a Fair Economy provides educational resources, works with grassroots groups, and supports creative and legislative action to reduce inequality. Their quarterly newsletter, Too Much, focuses on the implications of inequality on American life and labor.
  • Welfare, Workfare and Jobs: An Educator's Guidebook
  • .
    This resource, created by a coalition of union activists and welfare rights advocates, aims to educate union members, students, and community groups about the issues of welfare and work. The guidebook is a multiexercise curriculum including group activities, selected readings, and photos. Contact Urban Justice Center Organizing Project, 666 Broadway, 10th Floor, New York, NY 10012; (212) 533-0540.
  • Workfare Campaign of Resistance: Congregational Resource Kit
  • . This packet of study materials on the workfare issue, compiled by Judson Memorial Church and the Urban Justice Center, contains a wealth of resources on what the Bible and various faith traditions have to say about work and about the treatment of the most vulnerable in society. The kit includes history of the teaching of faith traditions, liturgical resources, thought experiments, and action ideas. Contact Peter Laarman, Judson Memorial Church, 55 Washington Square South, New York, NY 10012; (212) 477-0351. (See also page 37.)
  • Working USA
  • . This substantial bimonthly publication aims to benefit unionists with current research and thinking from campuses and elsewhere on labor issues, as well as to provide a forum for pro-labor intellectuals to engage with real-world dilemmas facing unionists under siege from the corporate Right. Contact M.E. Sharpe, Inc., 1-800-541-6563.
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