Historian and former union organizer Lane Windham sits down with longtime labor activist and leader Karen Nussbaum to discuss the promises and challenges in today's worker's movement through the lens of Nussbaum's own life. In 1973, Nussbaum cofounded 9to5, a groundbreaking women office workers' group, and now directs Working America, a community-based AFL-CIO group for working people who do not have a union, founded in 2003. Windham paints Nussbaum as a foremother of contemporary “alt-labor,” labor groups like Working America that are not based in traditional collective bargaining. Nussbaum and her 9to5 cofounders rode the momentum of the women's movement in the 1970s just as workers' organizations today build from the immigration, sustainable food, and global justice movements. Highlights of the article include Nussbaum's motivations for founding Working America, her thoughts on labor's future, and a discussion of strategies necessary for a potent new workers' movement.
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