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Catalyzing worker co-ops & the solidarity economy

"The Role of the Labor Movement in the Solidarity Economy"

You are invited to a panel discussion on the role of the labor movement in solidarity economy hosted by the Solidarity Economy Club at CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies on Friday, May 10, at 4pm ET (3pm CT / 1pm PT).

Solidarity Economy is an internationalist framework that seeks to unify diverse community-based initiatives toward a values-centered alternative to capitalism. Some of these initiatives include cooperatives, community gardens, land trusts, tenant’s unions, care networks & more.

There has been increasing attention on the role of the labor movement in solidarity economy as union leaders seek new ways to fight back against the increasing precarity caused by neoliberalism, automation and AI. As evidenced by the Union Co-op Model, unions and the labor movement more broadly can significantly support solidarity economy initiatives. Meanwhile, the solidarity economy movement can benefit workers and unions by developing community-based support networks that create long-term stability and community empowerment.

How can these movements better collaborate? Where are the success stories? Where is there room for improvement?

Join us for answers to these questions and more.


Jessica Gordon-Nembhard, Ph.D., is Professor of Community Justice and Social Economic Development, in the Department of Africana Studies, John Jay College, City University of New York. Author of Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice (2014), Dr. Gordon-Nembhard is an internationally recognized and widely published political economist specializing in cooperative economics, community economic development, racial wealth inequality, solidarity economics, Black Political Economy, popular economic literacy, and community-based approaches to justice.

Shaywaal Amin, Vice President of 1199SEIU-UHWE’s Nursing Home Division, is a dynamic Union leader that has proven history of successful contract negotiation and member strategies. He is still actively building consistent growth of members within the Union. Before devoting his work to the labor movement of 1199SEIU, Shaywaal worked at the Labor Research Association managing daily office operations, conducting research projects, and sales of the Publication Trade Union and the Economic Notes. Shaywaal is a poet, enthusiastic activist, and a visionary organizer who has spent time in the West African countries of Gambia and Senegal doing work with the operation crossroads. 

Alexander Kolokotronis is Director of the Naugatuck Valley Project (NVP). NVP has 23 member organizations, including 8 churches, a mosque, and numerous labor unions. Alex is also Director of NVP's community land trust arm, through which he stewards and supports six limited equity housing cooperatives. Prior to NVP, Alex worked at the Connecticut AFL-CIO, supporting union affiliates representing 250,000 union members and co-running a statewide election program that successfully swept labor union members into the state legislature. He recently completed his PhD at Yale University in political science. Alex is also one of the leaders of the Emerson Tenants Union, recently formed in downtown New Haven.

Register for the event on Zoom


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