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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Get to know your Labor Education and Research Center

U. of O. gov't union unit celebrates 30th anniversary
Critics say state taxpayers are negotiating against themselves


When Willamette Week reported last week that Sen. Kurt Schrader (D-Portland) had held up a $188,000 funding increase for The University of Oregon's Labor Education and Research Center, the publicity "outed" a labor union subsidy program that landed on many Oregonians' radar for the first time.

Add to the mix a state economy hurting due to inflationary labor strikes and a state budget shortfall that is requiring the Legislature to retroactively raise taxes, and the LERC subsidy is drawing renewed attention. LERC's Director is (see bio) Associate Professor Bob Bussel. According to LERC's U. of O. website:

LERC to was established in 1977 by the Oregon Legislature. They adopted a recommendation by the Oregon higher education system to create a bridge to the public university system for the state's working people and their unions.

LERC is committed to improving the lives of working Oregonians and enhancing their ability to participate effectively in workplace and community affairs. We believe that the presence of a strong union movement not only provides workers with vital protections but also is essential to maintaining a just and democratic society.

Programs and offerings funded by Oregon taxpayers include:

* Non-credit education and skills training ("Leadership Schools") throughout the state, culminating in a non-credit certificate in union leadership.
* Conferences on important labor and workplace issues in campus and off-campus settings.
* Multi-day residential institutes for union staff and rank-and-file leaders.
* Occupational safety and health training.
* Customized educational programs and classes tailored to the needs of individual unions and community organizations
* Research on vital issues related to work, employment, and occupational safety and health.
* Applied research for union and community partners.
* An internship program that places students with unions and other organizations dealing with work and employment issues.
* Consultation and technical assistance to unions, policy makers, community organizations, and other stakeholders.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's fair and balanced. Here's the LERC Advisory Board:

Members and Alternates:

Chair:
Ken Allen, Executive Director - American Federation of State County & Municipal Employees Council 75

Vice Chair:
Jeanne Carpenter, Organizer - Communication Workers of America 7901

Legislative Liaison:
Tom Chamberlain, President - Oregon AFL-CIO

Committee Members and Alternates:

Steven Araujo, Executive Director, Oregon School Employees Association Tony Andrews, President, Joint Council of Teamsters 37

Kelly Bach, President, Oregon State Firefighters Council

Box Bond, Associate Executive Director-Affiliate Services, Oregon Education Association

John Cornelius, President, Association of Flight Attendants Local 29

Alice Dale, President - Service Employees International Union 49

Leslie Frane, Executive Director - Service Employees International Union 503

Paul Goldberg, Assistant Executive Director-Labor Relations, Oregon Nurses Association

Cherry Harris, Representative, International Union of Operating Engineers 701

Mark Holliday, Business Manager, International Union of Operating Engineers 701

Dennis Hotchkiss, President, Oregon Postal Workers Union

Jon Hunt, Vice President, Amalgamated Transit Union Trades Council

John Mohlis, Executive Secretary, Columbia Pacific Building Trades Council

Victor Musial, Field Director - Oregon School Employees Association

Judy O'Connor, Secretary Treasurer - Northwest Oregon Labor Council

Mike Pieti, Executive Secretary - Western Council of Industrial Workers

Gaylan Prescott, Staff Representative - United Steel Workers of America District 11

Gene Pronovost, President - United Food & Commercial Workers

Ramon Ramirez, President, PCUN

Linda Rasmussen, Staff Representative - Communication Workers of America 7901

John Rhodes, President - Association of Western Pulp & Paper Workers

Ron Ruggiero, Service Employees International Union 49

Dan Sass, Executive Secretary - Oregon Machinists Council

Pete Savage, Regional Manager, Pacific NW Regional Council of Carpenters

Richard Schwarz, Executive Director - American Federation of Teachers Oregon

Mark Schwebke, President, American Federation of Teachers Oregon

Denny Scott, Director of Research - United Brotherhood of Carpenters & Joiners Association

Bill Uehlein, Field Director - Service Employees International Union 503

Steve Wilson, Business Representative - Woodworkers District Lodge

Alan Yoder, Labor Counsel - Oregon Nurses Association (alternate for ONA)

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