NWU Presence at Michigan, St. Louis Conferences

"Build bridges, not walls."

“Build bridges, not walls.”

In late August, I attended the UAW Luca Communications Conference (left) in upstate Michigan. I took a Video Across Platforms class and made this video that pays tribute to UAW founder Walter Reuther and the spirit of union members coming together in support of workers rights to a living wage, benefits, etc. I imagine there were about 100 people at LUCA, mostly UAW members from Detroit, the Midwest and the South.We heard from staffers and visiting guests about how to be more effective communicators within our locals.

I wrote stories for our website on two people I met at LUCA: a woman whose health was harmed by polluted Flint water, and a photographer whose union benefits are why she’s still here after being diagnosed with ovarian and colon cancer. The above picture above is by her, Sharon Geiselman.                  

IMG_2996In July, Alecia Goodlow-Young and I traveled to St. Louis to the Netroots Conference (right) to raise awareness among activist writers/bloggers about the National Writers Union. We got about 200 contacts and will follow up in the coming weeks and months.

The event focused on racial justice, and was held 12 miles from
Ferguson, MO, one of the many places unarmed black people have died at the hands of police in recent years and, sadly, days. Here’s a 2-minute video I made and edited on this aspect of the conference. Other workshop topics: reproductive rights, voting rights, dog-whistle politics, and the Republican governor behind Flint’s water crisis.

Our own Chris Savage, who runs ElectaBlog, moderated the Flint workshop, and several other NWU members attended Netroots, including the guy pictured above —whose name escapes me—standing between Alecia and myself. He was there there promoting a powerful documentary called, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, about overblown voter-fraud charges that continue to disproportionately harm people of color.