March 22, 2019
This week, twelve of our members joined almost 150 UAW members from across New York State to lobby in Albany on issues affecting our clients, communities, and organizations.
We spoke to elected officials about the importance of expanding rent protections statewide and strengthening rent stabilization here in New York City, funding the Communities First foreclosure prevention program, enacting campaign finance reform to get big money out and people in, reforming the criminal justice system by ending cash bail and modernizing New York’s antiquated and unfair discovery system, and more.
We received training on each of the issues beforehand, and heard addresses from state labor leaders and elected officials such as State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins, above.
Union member George Gardner is shown with his team, above.
“The thing I love the most about these lobbying trip is the real worker solidarity that is exhibited. We lobby on issues that have nothing to do with us but help our brothers and sisters upstate. Our upstate UAW brothers and sisters lobby for our funding and reforms that will help our clients. We all get to see how we are interconnected and unite together to bring everyone up.” Nicole Salk, Brooklyn shop
Below, Staten Island union members Rachel Granfield and Sarah Baldwin and their team meet with UAW Region 9A alum and NYS Assembly Member Harvey Epstein.
Below, union member Michael Watson lobbies with his team on reforming the rent laws.
“I had an incredible time at the conference and learned so much about the mission of UAW and the organizational structure. I have returned to the shop empowered and inspired by the various brothers and sisters of locals from across the state. All of our members should get a chance to attend one of these conferences, I think it would make our local stronger.” Michael Bailey, Brooklyn shop
Below, a live shot of union member Michael Bailey during a meeting with one of our state elected officials.
“It was great to better get to know people in our own local, as well as meet fellow union members from across the state. I really liked all the people in my group and enjoyed hearing about their own experiences with the UAW (one of my teammates, Dom, has been with the union for 64 years!). Going up to Albany drives home that you’re part of something so much bigger than yourself, and the positive feedback we received on the bills was really heartening.” Landry Haarman, Brooklyn shop
Jesse Daniels of LSNYC’s Bronx shop and Al Nadeau-Rifkin of LSNYC’s Brooklyn shop are shown with their team, below.
Below, union president Sonja Shield and a team of UAW members from across the state meet with Upper Manhattan Assembly Member Al Taylor.
“I enjoyed learning more about UAW and getting to know the incredible people in other locals (as well as ours!) throughout New York. A lot of the work we do as attorneys is focused on our individual clients and so having the opportunity to join the broader movements around labor and housing issues was really inspiring.” Laura Hecht-Felella, Brooklyn shop
All members are welcome to join our trip next year. No prior experience is necessary.