CTUL VISION AND MISSION
MISSION: CTUL is an organization where workers build power to lead the struggle for fair wages, better working conditions, basic respect, and a voice in our workplaces. We are an organization of workers and for workers, committed to winning this struggle and in doing so, create a better future for the next generation.
VISION: CTUL is dedicated to a vision of an empowered community of workers, and to that end is working toward increased involvement on the part of our members in determining the direction of our organization and its programs. We see workers coming together to improve their working conditions and strengthen their circumstances as the most effective way to grow and become stronger as a group, and to convince other workers that this is a cause worth joining and a fight they can win. We believe that we as workers can be the most effective voices and advocates for the betterment of our wages and working conditions. We are devoted to proving that as one united force, we will be able to prove the truth of the words: SI SE PUEDE!
CTUL’s structure is centered around our Leadership Development Program. This Program focuses on engaging low-wage workers in a constant cycle of reflection and action, including:
- Outreach. Worker members and staff lead presentations in the community, flyer in low-wage neighborhoods, speak on community radio stations, and publish articles in community newspapers, all aimed at educating workers about their basic workplace rights and inviting new workers into the Center. We have established relationships with dozens of social service organizations and churches who refer workers to the Center.
- Popular Education meetings. New workers who come to CTUL come to one of four Popular Education meetings held every month. In these meetings we analyze various topics including: historical struggles for justice (the Civil Rights Movement, worker struggles of the late 1880s, etc.); current struggles for justice in other parts of the country (the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, United Workers Association, etc.); current social, political and economic events (globalization, immigration policy, etc.); and concrete organizing skill trainings (1-1 trainings, mapping the workplace, etc). With each of these topics, our goal is to learn from our own experiences and from the experiences of others in order to continue developing our own organizing capacity.
- Campaign Committee meetings. Workers who face workplaces issues and have come to at least one Popular Education meeting are invited to one of four Campaign Committee meetings per month to analyze the specific problems each person is facing in their workplace and develop campaigns to overcome those problems. Through these campaigns, workers have been able to recover close to $500,000 in back wages. Click here for examples of just a few of our victories.
- Membership. Low-wage workers who have participated in at least three meetings can become members of the organization. Twice per year members gather for membership meetings. In these meetings the MO presents proposals, and members discuss and vote on the proposals to make major decisions about the future of the organization. Currently there are over 80 members.
- Committees. Staff and active worker members invite new workers who have shown commitment through their involvement in the Center into concrete roles with the organization through our committee structure, currently including the Outreach Committee, the Cleaning Campaign Committee and the Campaign Committee Committee. These committees meet once per month and focus both on gaining concrete skills in organizing (how to speak in public, facilitation skills, how to speak with press, etc.) as well as the immediate tasks of each committee.
- Mesa Organizadora. The Mesa Organizadora meets once a month to make programmatic decisions for the organization, define the work of the organization to be carried out by committees, and to further develop leadership and organizing skills. There are currently 6 low wage workers on the Mesa Organizadora.