Communications in Organizing (LS084)

This 7-week class is designed to provide union officers, staff, and activists with the communications strategies and techniques to wage effective campaigns to organize non-union workers. The course helps participants confront the status quo where a majority of American worker’s express support for joining a union, but are intimidated by management or may remain unconvinced that unions can make a tangible difference in the lives of workers and their families.

Key Topics:

  • Understanding why a powerful message is crucial
  • Organizing the unorganized: legal rules and overall context of corporations and pro-business media’s varied attacks on unions.
  • Skills and techniques necessary to wage a successful organizing drive
  • How to connect with unorganized workers
  • How to anticipate and analyze the employer's anti-union message
  • Developing a strong pro-union message
  • Understanding who needs to hear the union message
  • How to deliver your message effectively

Approach and Features

The importance of developing a simple but compelling "Problem-Solution-Action" message is heavily stressed.  This message-development process applies equally to other media campaigns in which unions need to engage.  The fundamental step of listening closely to unorganized workers is emphasized. At the same time, the value of reaching other audiences with a moral appeal—worker's family members, specific community groups and leaders who can offer concrete support, and the broader public—is a constant theme.

Benefits to You and Your Organization

  • This class is designed to provide you and your union with the set of skills and techniques necessary to wage a successful organizing drive among workers who have shown interest in forming a labor union.
  • The class will also equip you with the fundamentals of developing a powerful message that resonates with the workers you are working to organize.  This approach to message development can also be applied to other issue campaigns where your union needs to build public support on critical issues.
  • The course will teach you the techniques for reaching audiences beyond the workers themselves, and why this is so crucial
  • You will gain a clear sense of the legal rights of union organizers and workers in an environment where employers routinely engage in tactics of intimidation without regard to the law.
  • Effective and innovative methods of delivering the basic union message will be learned and applied.  You will learn how to stage news conferences and other events to build understanding and support for the union cause.


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