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Catalyzing worker co-ops & the solidarity economy

Rust Belt Riders Becomes a Worker Co-op

The composting and soil company Rust Belt Riders recently added Heinen’s grocery as a customer, adding to its growth during the pandemic. Now, it’s converting to a worker-owned cooperative to give its employees a stronger voice and a share of the profits. 

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This month, Rust Belt Riders also finalized its transformation into a worker-owned cooperative, meaning that all employees who have logged more than 3,000 hours with the company – about a year and a half of full-time work – are eligible to become worker-owners. These worker-owners can participate in decision-making and earn a dividend or share of the profits the company makes. 

Michael Robinson, who co-founded RBR with Daniel Brown, said on the one hand, the recently-signed co-op agreement is the culmination of years of hard work, but in other ways it isn’t new at all. 

“We put a lot of effort into creating a culture of ownership,” he said. “We were already walking like a co-op, talking like a co-op.”

Read the rest at The Land

 

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