2009 – Building membership and forming our own organization
In 2009 the most active worker leaders chose to form a membership structure, so that workers could identify themselves as part of a movement for systemic change in the workplace. Low-wage workers who have come to at least three activities with the organization can become a member by paying $10 for an ID, and $50 per year dues. Workers in many cases have used their IDs when talking with their employers to demonstrate that they are not alone.
Workers also chose to separate from WIN to ensure that low-wage workers of color led their own organization. CTUL's Board is made up entirely of low-wage worker members from our base.
2014 – Winning a voice at the Table: Fight for $15, Defensores, Responsible Contractor Policy
After years of organizing marches, strikes and more with retail janitors, and after a year of dialogue between retail janitors and Target executives, Target created a Responsible Contractor Policy that ensures the fair treatment of the workers who clean Target stores in the Twin Cities metro area.
Through this work, CTUL members have successfully created safety committees in several workplaces that are made up of 50% workers elected by their peers which meet once a month to discuss health and safety concerns in the workplace.
Members have gained important changes through this table, including upgrading equipment, not having to pay for t-shirts, resolving workplace accidents, and more. CTUL has also maintained open dialogue with Target Corporation to deal with broader health concerns in the community such as access to paid sick days. CTUL has also engaged other corporate partners in changing the retail janitorial industry.