Labor and Democracy: What’s at Stake?

by Eisenhower Institute

Lecture Public

Tue, Mar 21, 2023

7 PM – 9 PM EDT (GMT-4)

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College Union 260


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America has a long history of elevating the voices of frontline workers through collective bargaining. By addressing inequities and the needs of workers and their families, the labor movement helped build a strong middle class - the foundation of our democracy. As a longtime labor leader and former president of the United Auto Workers, Bob King is a leading voice on the importance of unions. In the 21st Annual Blavatt lecture, Bob will discuss how strong unions benefit everyone in society. His lecture and interactive discussion will explore how empowering workers is key to preserving democracy and how progressive unions and progressive employers can work together for the benefit of the employer, the employees, and the overall community.

About the Speaker:
Bob King retired from the United Automobile Workers (UAW) in June 2014, after 44 years as an activist and leader and completing a four-year term as president of the union. Known for his activism and passionate belief in social and economic justice, since retiring, King has remained very active in social justice causes in his community and globally. He led global efforts to create formal networks of global unions, led negotiations of the first Global Framework Agreement with a United States based global corporation and assisted more than 80,000 workers in their efforts to join the UAW. He pioneered the use of innovative neutrality and majority sign-up agreements with employers that gave workers the right to join the UAW without employer interference. Mr. King has led delegations to support and organize union workers in El Salvador and Mexico. He was a visiting researcher at the University of California, Berkeley for the spring 2015 semester, where he co-taught a seminar with professor Harley Shaiken on “Labor and the Global Economy.” He currently is a Lecturer at the University of Michigan teaching the importance of collective action and collective bargaining in winning greater economic equality in the US and the world. Mr. King remains active in supporting AFSCME locals and advocating for mental health.


College Union 260


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