Bridging our movements at Creating Change

A considerable part of Pride at Work’s mission is to promote the message and values of the Labor Movement in the LGBTQIA+ community. We all know that LGBTQIA+ workers are much better off financially in a union because ALL workers do better in a union. But a collective agreement can do more than just boost your paycheck—it can also provide much-needed workplace protections for our community.

One way we work to fulfill that mission is by attending the Creating Change conference, which is hosted by the National LGBTQ Task Force. Creating Change is the largest gathering of LGBTQIA+ equality activists in the nation, and it is a perfect opportunity to spread the word about the importance of unions.

Every year, we host the Pride at Work Labor Caucus at Creating Change, which has become a gathering spot for the growing number of Labor activists attending Creating Change. The conversations we have in that caucus are enlightening as much as they are refreshing – it’s great to hear about queer union organizing from such diverse voices.

However, there was always a piece missing from Creating Change that we believed needed to be a more integral part of the conference—labor-focused training and workshops. While we’ve hosted workshops in the past, the gold-standard training for Creating Change is a day-long institute.

This year, we had our first opportunity to host both the Labor Caucus and a labor-focused day-long institute, and it was terrific. Since this was a pilot program, we invited a few of our most trusted union partners to help us build and execute the institute’s programming.

Along with our partners from UNITE HERE, Workers United/SEIU, UFCW, AFA-CWA, and NEA, we worked hand-in-hand to deliver a day filled with education, information, and discussion. Segments included what a union is and why it matters to LGBTQIA+ workers, how to organize and form a union, and deep dives into queer labor organizing that’s happening right now.

Unions are more popular than ever, and this showed during this conference. We packed the room twice – at the caucus and the institute – and folks wanted more. The feedback from both sessions was phenomenal. We’re looking forward to next year and seeing how we can expand our content and bring in more union partners.

Learn more about Creating Change on their website.