The Freelance Solidarity Project — NWU’s Digital Media Division — elected its first two co-chairs for 2023, with Olivia Schwob serving as Administrative Coordinator and Abigail Higgins serving as Member Organizer.
The co-chairs, along with a new Steering Committee structure, are part of an effort to make the Freelance Solidarity Project’s ambitious organizing more sustainable and better integrated into the union as a whole.
This year has seen the Freelance Isn’t Free Act advance in New York State and across the country, which is helping to establish more favorable terms for freelancers at publications, including The Nation and Jewish Currents. At the same time, there are coordinating events, pledges, and other campaigns to build solidarity with staff unions, international freelancers, and other precarious workers.
As the Administrative Coordinator, Olivia will maintain FSP’s member rolls and digital tools, organize meeting logistics, and oversee internal communications such as FSP’s newsletter and calls for solidarity. A member since 2019, Olivia was on the Organizing Committee from 2021-22 and has been a part of the union’s legislative work, as well as its international and inter-union solidarity work. Olivia sees this position as an opportunity to continue the work of streamlining and optimizing FSP’s systems to prepare the union for a phase of maturity, longevity, and growth.
As the Member Coordinator, Abigail will coordinate prospective member recruitment, plug new members into the union’s ongoing organizing, and coordinate and maintain campaign timelines. A member since 2020, Abigail was also a part of the 2021-22 Organizing Committee, helped win the Unilateral Announcement with The Nation, and was part of FSP’s international and inter-union solidarity work.
Abigail sees this position as an opportunity to increase the number of dues-paying and actively involved members in order to further the union’s work and to bring solidarity to media culture, collectively improve working conditions, and fight exploitation of all contingent workers.