Jobs with Justice and American Rights at Work — two union-supported national organizations — are merging.
Jobs with Justice, founded by Communications Workers of America president Larry Cohen, is a 25-year old network of local labor-community coalitions that specializes in pickets in support of worker struggles. American Rights at Work, founded by Michigan Congressman David Bonior, is a D.C.-based research and policy advocacy group that built a case for the Employee Free Choice Act (a bill in Congress that would make it easier for workers to unionize and get a first union contract). With the failure of Congress to pass the Employee Free Choice Act, American Rights at Work needed new direction.
“A lot of key labor stakeholders and leaders of both organizations said we share a fundamental mission: protecting and expanding the right to organize and collectively bargain,” said Jobs with Justice Executive Director Sarita Gupta, who leads the merged group.
“American Rights at Work does it through research, policy, and communications, and Jobs with Justice does it though mobilization, solidarity, strategic campaigns and educating the base. So the question is, ‘How could these two capacities come together to build a more effective organization that’s committed to advance workers rights in a new era?’”
The merged group will keep both group names for the time being, but with combined staff and boards of directors. Twelve employees of JwJ and eight from ARW staff will work together in the current American Rights at Work office in Washington, D.C.