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PLACA presents: A Model of Labor Transnationalism: The UE-FAT Cross-Border Alliance

220 Eggers Hall

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A Model of Labor Transnationalism: The UE-FAT Cross-Border Alliance Panelists: Robin Alexander Director of International Affairs at United Electrical Workers (UE) Benedicto Martinez Orozco Co-President of Frente Autentico del Trabajo (FAT) The UE-FAT Strategic Organizing Alliance is quite unique in the history of transnational labor organizing and is often referred to as a model for international solidarity. Both unions have been able to sustain themselves as independent worker organizations in the face of large, centralized and bureaucratized national labor federations that have developed a sometimes insurmountable distance from the labor grassroots. The UE is a historical rarity in the U.S. and is deserving of study for this as well as for the political principles which led it to chart its own path despite tremendous pressures to fall in line with a historically establishment-friendly national federation. It is one of the original CIO Unions and maintains as its watchword a commitment to democratic and independent rank-and-file unionism. The UE’s most significant cross-border alliance has been with the Frente Auténtico del Trabajo (FAT), one of the only independent labor federations in Mexico. It is composed of labor unions, worker owned cooperatives, and farm worker and community organizations. In addition, a national women’s network which coordinates work on gender and equity is represented within the FAT’s leadership body and operates within all of its sectors and zones. A reception will follow the presentation. Co-sponsored by Latino-Latin American Studies (LLAS), Department of Sociology, Department of Geography, and Women's and Gender Studies Department. 


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