Low Wage Workers and Organizing Graphic

A conference of major thinkers and researchers sharing new models of worker organizing, labor market trends, and emerging sectors.

 

Friday, April 19, 2013
UCLA Faculty Center

Hacienda Room

480 Charles E. Young Dr. East

Los Angeles, CA, 90095

Registration

 

Agenda

Conference Video
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Saturday, April 20, 2013
UCLA Downtown Labor Center

675 S Park View St

Los Angeles, CA 90057

 


Sponsored with a grant from the Ford Foundation, this conference aims to stimulate research and discussion on key issues that impact low-wage workers and to focus on the particular role of groups, organizations, organizing strategies and campaigns in the lives of low wage workers. Senior scholars and thinkers together with emerging academics will address a variety of issues, including: engaged research; organizing impact; relevant legal issues; intersectionality; social movements and immigration; and emerging sectors and peripheral movements.  

 

We invite you to attend this conference and join us in discussing connections between new models of worker organizing and current labor market trends in ways that will move this topic in new and exciting ways.

 

 

 

 

 

Conference Agenda:

Friday, April 19, 2013 | University of California, Los Angeles

 

9:00 AM - 9:30 AM
Welcome
Abel Valenzuela | Professor & Director, Center for Study of Urban Poverty, UC Los Angeles
 
9:30 AM - 11:00 AM
Keynote Address
Héctor Cordero-Guzmán, Ph.D. | Professor, Baruch College, City University New York
 
11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Opening Plenary
Moderator:   
Abel Valenzuela | Professor & Director, Center for the Study of Urban Poverty, UC Los Angeles
Panelists:  
Nik Theodore, Ph.D. | Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago
Steven Pitts, Ph.D. | Labor Policy Specialist, Center for Labor Research and Education, Insitute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley
Edwin Melendez, Ph.D. | Professor, Hunter College, City University New York

Broad overview of the state of worker centers, their emergence as a vehicle for organizing, their limitations, challenges, and opportunities, including a comparative analysis of worker centers to other organizing models, the constraints and challenges worker centers face in advocating for African Americans and facilitating black and brown unity among low wage workers, and new trends and possible outcomes in workforce development and worker centers, and more generally, low wage workers and workforce development.

 
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Lunch
 
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Panel 1: Worker Centers Making an Impact & Engaged Research
Moderator:   
Victor Narro | Project Director, Center for Labor Research and Education, UC Los Angeles
Panelists:  
Anne Visser, Ph.D. | Assistant Professor, UC Davis
Nina Martin, Ph.D. | Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Hugo Sarmiento | Ph.D. Student, UC Los Angeles
Ana Luz Gonzalez | Ph.D Candidate, UC Los Angeles

Examines issues of impact and outcomes of worker centers on wages, job acquisition, and in other ways.

This panel also looks at some of the challenges, limitations, and opportunities that come with researching workers in worker centers or related organizing models.

 
4:15 PM - 6:00 PM
Panel 2: Relevant Legal Issues
Moderator:   
Abel Valenzuela | Professor & Director, Center for Study of Urban Poverty, UC Los Angeles
Panelists:  
Scott Cummings, J.D. | Professor of Law, UC Los Angeles
Jessica Rose Garrick | Ph.D. Student, University of New Mexico
Chris Newman, J.D. | Legal Programs Coordinator, National Day Laborer Organizing Network

An examination of legal issues relevant to the worker center movement, including the roles of lawyers, the regulation of worker centers under statutory laws concerning labor organizations, relevant international legal, and worker centers engagement in Critical Legal and Critical Race Praxis.

 

Saturday, April 20, 2013 | UCLA Downtown Labor Center

8:45 AM - 9:00 AM
Welcome & Introduction
Abel Valenzuela | Professor & Director, Center for Study of Urban Poverty, UC Los Angeles
   
9:00 AM - 10:30 AM
Panel 3: Intersectionality
Moderator:   
Abel Valenzuela | Professor & Director, Center for Study of Urban Poverty, UC Los Angeles
Panelists:  
Steve McKay, Ph.D. | Associate Professor, UC Santa Cruz
Eileen Boris, Ph.D. | Professor, UC Santa Barbara
Preeti Sharma | Ph.D. Student, UC Los Angeles

Discusses how the intersectionality of class, race, nationality, gender, immigration status and other identities, shape the current experiences of low wage workers and low wage worker organizing, as well as the importance of the same to the construction of a principled unity between the worker center movement and broader social movements.

   
10:45 AM - 12:30 PM
Panel 4: Social Movements and Immigration
Moderator:   
Héctor Cordero-Guzmán, Ph.D. | Professor, Baruch College, City University New York
Panelists:  
Ramon Borges-Mendez, Ph.D. | Associate Professor, Clark University
Els de Grauww, Ph.D. | Assistant Professor, City University New York
Joshua Bloom | Ph.D. Candidate, UC Los Angeles
Mindy Chen | Ph.D. Student, UC Los Angeles

Looks at how the social movement framework can help us better understand the work of worker centers and examines the ways in which worker centers not only represent, but also shape and help define, the substance and direction of the economic justice and immigrant rights movements.

   
12:30 PM - 2:00PM
Lunch with Keynote and Book Signing
Saru Jayaraman, J.D. | Restaurant Opportunities Center United and UC Berkeley
   
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Panel 5: Emerging Sectors and Peripheral Movements
Moderator:   
Abel Valenzuela | Professor & Director, Center for Study of Urban Poverty, UC Los Angeles
Panelists:  
Maria Cristina Morales, Ph.D. | Associate Professor, University of Texas, El Paso
Pascale Joassart, Ph.D. | Associate Professor, San Diego State University
Shannon Gleeson, Ph.D. | Assistant Professor, UC Santa Cruz
Rocio Rosales, Ph.D. | UC President's Postdoctoral Fellow, UC San Diego

Examines similar organizing efforts beyond worker centers that draws on different sectors, organizations, civil society, and other institutions.  

   
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Student Research Presentations & Closing Reception
Moderators:  
Victor Narro | Project Director, Center for Labor Research and Education, UC Los Angeles
Janna Shadduck-Hernandez | Project Director, Center for Labor Research and Education, UC Los Angeles