Notes from June 4, 2023 General Membership Meeting

Oregon Chapter of the National Writers Union (NWU)

The meeting opened at 4:04 PM.

Minutes from the previous March meeting were approved.

Chapter President Marty Hart-Landsberg provided the following updates:

  1. We are affiliated with the Oregon AFL-CIO and our dues are paid up to January of 2024
  2. We have NWU signs and buttons available. Please contact Marty if you can use these. We will need some for the coming Oregon AFL-CIO convention
  3. We should promote our Oregon Labor Media and Resources page and keep it updated

It was also suggested that we provide a link to our page to the Oregon AFL-CIO website.

Bob Rossi reported on the recent Oregon AFL-CIO organizing conference. There was not much there for freelancers and writers, but a four-page handout from one of the workshops did highlight the steps taken in the successful union campaign run by the NewsGuild at the L.A. Times. There were interesting discussions. Liz Shuler, President of the AFL-CIO, addressed the body. The Writers Guild strike was mentioned many times.

Pat Riggs-Henson reported on the Lane County Labor Council, the restructuring taking place in the Council, the campaign being run by the UFCW against Representative Paul Holvey, and the coming Labor Day picnic. We discussed the viability of Central Labor Councils and Chapters and how these might meet the challenges of the 2024 elections.

Elissa Edge reported on the Marion-Polk-Yamhill Central Labor Chapter (MPYCLC). Officers are needed. Virtual meetings worked better than the MPYCLC’s face-to-face meetings do. Bob Rossi supported the report and talked about the recent Salem-Keizer School Board elections. Pat Riggs-Henson suggested that a plan for the MPYCLC could include quarterly face-to-face meetings.

Michael Funke reported on labor activism in central Oregon. Labor has had some political victories there. The St. Charles Medical Center nurses may strike. The Oregon Nurses Association is running workplace and community campaigns there. Michael has a blog and podcast that the Chapter lists on our website.

Lura Frazey gave the treasurer’s report. We have not received a financial report from the national union office. Our Oregon AFL-CIO dues are paid. We do not have confirmation that our donation to the Portland tenants rights effort has been processed.

Marty Hart-Landsberg reported that the Oregon AFL-CIO convention will be held in Bend on September 21-23. We need to find out how many delegates we are entitled to and get this information out to our members quickly. Pat Riggs-Henson and Jay Wells expressed interest in attending the convention as delegates. We need literature for our table. Pat and Marty will work on developing literature. We need to know what our convention expenses will be.