Hundreds of campaign workers form union,
demanding a living wage, basic protections
WASHINGTON, DC — Today, campaign workers across the country publicly launched a new, independent union and announced their first-ever bargaining agreement with candidate Randy Bryce’s campaign in Wisconsin’s 1st district. The Campaign Workers Guild (CWG) is a national union representing non-management workers on electoral and issue-based campaigns.
CWG’s mission is to ensure that campaign workers have reasonable work hours, fair wages, workplace rights, and basic labor protections. This announcement comes just months before the 2018 midterm elections, while many progressive candidates are just recruiting their campaign staff.
Although many progressive candidates advocate for pro-union policies, they fail to practice what they preach. Campaign workers frequently work close to 80 hours a week, get paid far less than fifteen dollars an hour, and face workplace hazards like sexual harassment. Despite the enormous sums of money spent on elections—a combined $6.5 billion during the 2016 cycle—the workers entrusted with running candidates’ campaign are too often underpaid, overworked, and undervalued. CWG believes that it is time for candidates and elected officials to support the working people who put them in office.
CWG is calling for a party-wide collective bargaining agreement covering campaign workers on all local, state, and federal Democratic campaigns as well as progressive ballot measures. In the meantime, they are organizing campaign by campaign.
In CWG’s first organizing victory, CWG members working for congressional candidate Randy Bryce secured a union contract guaranteeing fair working conditions. Bryce is an ironworker challenging House Speaker Paul Ryan in Wisconsin’s 1st congressional district.
CWG is ready to work with more campaigns and urges campaign workers to visit their website (campaignworkersguild.org) to learn more.
Statement from Laura Reimers, President of the Campaign Workers Guild:
“We will build stronger campaigns and a stronger movement when we treat campaign workers with respect. It is time for candidates to practice what they preach.”
Statement from Meg Reilly, Vice President of the Campaign Workers Guild:
“We refuse to allow candidates across the country to continue to identify themselves as pro-union or pro-worker when they fail to guarantee the same labor rights they claim to support.”
Statement from Nate Rifkin, Randy Bryce for Congress Union Steward:
“Unions fight for worker rights and dignity. They help facilitate more equal relationships between labor and management. Every worker deserves the right to join a union, and that includes campaign staffers. The workers on our now unionized campaign are proud to work for Randy Bryce, a person, and candidate, who practices what he preaches.”