Young Workers Converge in Minneapolis for the AFL-CIO’s Next Up Summit

Young Workers Converge in Minneapolis for the AFL-CIO's Next Up Summit

, California Labor Federation

In this economy, young people need the labor movement more than ever. That’s why I am excited to join young workers from throughout California and across the country to attend the Next Up Young Workers Summit in Minneapolis this weekend. We’ll hear diverse voices from inside and outside the labor movement including AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and actors Lucas Neff from Fox’s “Raising Hope” and RJ Mitte from “Breaking Bad”. The summit will focus on the current economic crisis and pathways to building a just economy as well as the ongoing attacks on workers’ rights from state legislatures. 

And what better place to bring young people together to discuss these pertinent issues than Minneapolis, a hip city with an active downtown. We’ll convene to take on the current economic crises, and develop strategies on creating an economy that works for all. That’s a particular passion of mine. This economy has hit everyone hard, but for young workers, it’s sapped the sense of hope that’s defined our generation. Like generations before us, we want a positive future that includes justice on the job instead of fending off attacks from right-wing politicians. We want access to education and affordable healthcare instead of massive foreclosures and jobs being sent overseas. We want a high-road economy that will rebuild the middle class instead of a race to the bottom that destroys. And we’re ready to mobilize and fight for our values, just as trade unionists have done for generations.

I am looking forward to exchanging ideas and interacting with my peers using our energy and creativity. The conference has some great workshops on organizing, coalition building, social media and addressing free trade agreements-just to name a few. The AFL-CIO has also created time for us to get out in the streets of Minneapolis and participate in political action.

We’ll also have time for California folks to gather to share strategies and ideas on how to bring even more young people into the labor movement, and some fun social activities to help us bond around the important work we have before us (look out for our invite!).  On Day 3 of the conference, we’re hosting a California breakout session, so young workers from our state will be able to address issues more specific to California.

I look forward to seeing everyone and meeting all the folks from California and across the country attending this important conference. We’re Next Up, and we’re ready!

To see the agenda and other details  you can go to http://www.aflcio.org/aboutus/youthsummit/.