Resolution No. 27: Worker Ownership and Workers’ Capital
WHEREAS, our employers are continuing to earn record profits while the income of working families stagnate; and
WHEREAS, in the United States, 95% of income gains since 2009 have gone to the wealthiest 1% of the population, worsening wealth inequality in the United States; and
WHEREAS, wealth inequality has increased in Canada over the past 30 years, with the two wealthiest Canadians having as much wealth as the poorest 11 million Canadians; and
WHEREAS, USW members have billions of dollars invested in pension plans, 401(k) plans, Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs) and labour sponsored investment plans in Canada, such as the Quebec Federation of Labour Solidarity Fund and the Working Opportunity Fund; and
WHEREAS, history has proven that these investments of our savings can produce both a healthy monetary return and a social return that sustains and creates jobs and invests in our communities; and
WHEREAS, we have too often seen the opposite result when we do not influence those investments, leaving Wall Street and Bay Street to gamble with our money in ways that threaten our jobs and destroy our communities; and
WHEREAS, worker ownership has proven to be fruitful when ownership means much more than just the value of a share; and
WHEREAS, creating sustainable jobs that pay a living wage also helps to create sustainable communities.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that:
(1) Our Union will continue to pursue every responsible avenue to ensure that the investments of the USW and of USW members collectively are used in a way that not only provides a reasonable monetary return, but also provides job security, job creation, invests in our communities and builds sustainable regional economies.
(2) Our Union will continue to promote and develop unionized, worker-owned Union Co-ops, as well as other forms of worker-ownership, as a profitable and sustainable means to create jobs and support our communities.
(3) The USW supports the United States Federation of Worker Co-operatives www.usworker.coop) in their efforts to promote and support worker-owned businesses. The USW further supports 1worker1vote.org in developing unionized, worker-owned Union Co-ops.