The Teamsters National Black Caucus (TNBC) recently wrapped up another successful conference, held this year in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
The 42nd annual Educational Conference and Banquet’s theme this year was “Empowerment through Education is the Bridge to the Future.”
The education was on display this year, as International Union organizer James Curbeam presented an organizing workshop. Five other organizers participated in the TNBC event this year: Allan Henry, Stephen Hanson, Mike Marvray, Tremayne Johnson and Michele Haynes.
Curbeam presented a list of organizing efforts and successes over the past year, which included victories at Red Cross, the West Contra Costa School District workers, Sims Recycling Workers and San Bernardino Preschool Workers.
Curbeam highlighted the major wins, including how educating the local and its workers made it possible to win card-check recognition at Red Cross, thus avoiding a representation election.
“That was Teamster Power,” Curbeam said.
Curbeam urged TNBC members to get involved in organizing campaign. He encouraged members to join the port strikes that take place at the Ports of LA and Long Beach.
“Those strikes show Teamster Power because we shut down terminals all day,” Curbeam said.
Labor and social justice goes hand-in-hand and Teamsters are in the business of changing people’s lives.
“Through organized labor we improve lives of workers across the country, which gives people the opportunity to have a voice in the workplace,” he said.
Building alliances is also very important to growing the union.
“In areas that we have good relationships with the community and have political friends, we have to use that leverage to be able to grow, to get good contracts and make full use of the Teamster power that I know we have,” Curbeam said.