American workers and Democrats alike made history today when the Campaign Workers Guild announced that it has negotiated its first collective bargaining agreement with Democrat Randy Bryce, the leading candidate looking to unseat House Speaker Paul Ryan in the battle for Wisconsin’s 1st District.
Bryce is himself a veteran and a member of the Ironworkers Local 8 union, a man who knows firsthand the importance of strong labor unions and dedicated to ensuring that the workers of his state receive the wages they deserve, so it only makes sense that his campaign would be the first to grant his non-managerial campaign staff the protections and the benefits they deserve.
“If I’m talking about the importance of unions on the campaign trail, it makes sense that the people who work on the campaign should have representation,” says Bryce.
The Nation reports that “under the groundbreaking contract, the eight members of the Bryce campaign staff secured a 1 percent pay raise and reimbursements for health-insurance premiums. In addition, the contract provides for a formal grievance process and a third-party reporting system for sexual harassment.”
The need for proper systems for reporting sexual harassment in election campaigns were made all too clear last month when it was revealed that rather than punish a staffer accused of repeated sexual harassment by a co-worker on the 2008 campaign, former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton simply moved him to another office before hiring him again in 2016, only to watch him be promptly fired for sexual harassment.
While the candidates receive all the fame and the adulation for their work, it’s the determined people who toil behind the scenes, spending long nights on the phone and neglecting their loved ones in the lead up to election day who are the real drivers of political change in our nation – and it’s long past time they got the protections and the benefits that they deserve.
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