Building Union Strength Together: Paid Organizing Training Opportunity!

LEO’s statewide affiliate AFT Michigan, with the help of AFT National, are recruiting for the Winter 2019 cohort of the Member Organizing Institute (MOI). This is a hands-on organizing training program that teaches union members how to do part-time organizing work to build member-to-member connections and power in their local unions. The MOI program will teach union members how to have one-on-one conversations with colleagues about building our union, and encourage them to utilize their unique strengths for union activism.

LEO had 2 member participants in the Fall 2018 MOI.

Below, read a description from one member organizer about her experience meeting other Lecturers, helping them understand their rights, and collaborating to establish more equitable and fair working conditions for one another and all of us.

AFT Fall 2018 Member Organizing Institute participants at training weekend, with the President of AFT National Randi Weingarten. The Fall 2018 cohort included 15 member organizers from 8 locals across the state, who were able to meet and learn from each other in Detroit!

AFT Fall 2018 Member Organizing Institute participants at training weekend, with the President of AFT National Randi Weingarten. The Fall 2018 cohort included 15 member organizers from 8 locals across the state, who were able to meet and learn from each other in Detroit!

My experience with the AFT MOI

The AFT MOI was a valuable and meaningful experience for me.  Basically, I’ve learned how to discuss union organizing with other lecs.  We’ve talked about the bargaining agreement, union membership, and union support, but what’s been so moving to me has been listening to others, sharing stories, and coming up with plans to improve our situations in ways that feel organic.  

Along the way, I’ve been sharing with lecs how the new bargaining agreement has affected me personally. Of course, I talk about the pay raise. But I also describe how I was laid off for Fall Semester, and yet, thanks to our union, received a percentage of my pay.  That money helped to take the edge off and it made me doubly thankful to our union’s bargaining team.

What’s been so moving to me has been listening to others, sharing stories, and coming up with plans to improve our situations in ways that feel organic.
— LEO Fall 2018 Member Organizing Institute Participant

So, I hope you will consider it, whether you’ve been active in the past or not. There is truly no wrong time to get involved! For example, during our contract bargaining in 2017-18, I regularly attended bargaining sessions, but barely said a word until late Spring. [Editor’s note: and just one semester later, this LEO member became a bona fide organizer!]

AFT MOI Winter 2019 Details

Stipend:

  • Member organizers will work 50 hrs over 2-3 months @ $15/hr to earn a $750 stipend

  • Member organizers will be responsible for submitting time sheets and organizing reports to be paid

Eligibility:

  • All dues-paying members are eligible, provided they are able to attend the training weekend on Saturday, January 26 and Sunday, January 27 at Wayne State University in Detroit. Participants should plan to dedicate up to 5 hours on each day for the training, not including transit time to Detroit

  • We can provide transportation and lodging support to participants if there is need

  • If you are very interested in the MOI but extenuating circumstances prevent you from attending the training weekend in person, contact us anyway to discuss!

Winter 2019 MOI Timeline:

  • December 9-January 25: Recruitment & screening of MOI candidates

  • January 26-27: MOI Training (at the AFT Michigan Leadership Summit at Wayne State)

  • January 28-April 12: Participants organize and work with their locals to build power!

  • April 13: MOI Winter Cohort Graduation (at AFT Michigan Leadership Summit)

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN PARTICIPATING IN THE WINTER 2019 MEMBER ORGANIZING INSTITUTE WITH LEO, OR HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE CONTACT ANGIE@LEOUNION.ORG!

LEO Communications Committee