2018 Convention Agenda and Resolution

At this year's membership convention, we'll be debating and voting on the vision, principles, and strategy that will move our work forward over the next two years. Read the 2018 Resolution on Movement Politics that our Party Committee has drafted for consideration from the membership and check out the agenda for the convention! 2018 Resolution on Movement Politics from the UWF Party Committee

Guided by: Our vision for a city and a state that provides for the many, not just the wealthy few.

Recognizing: That working people in Chicago and Illinois are under attack from a system of social and economic exploitation that has enriched financial elites while stripping all others of the basic provisions needed to live with peace and dignity.

Recognizing: That communities of color, and particularly Black people, have borne the brunt of these attacks, resulting in unconscionable levels of displacement, incarceration, violence, and unemployment.

Recognizing: That winning a different future for our city and state--in which all working people can hold jobs with dignity, live in safe, stable, and affordable housing, and send their children to free, world-class public schools from birth to college--will require progressive revenue that transfers private profits into the public sphere and stops the massive privatization of public accommodation.

Recognizing: That the forces aligned against this vision have an overwhelming financial advantage that has been systematically deployed to weaken the political power of working-class people and foster racial strife amongst people of color along with manufactured hatred and violence.

Recognizing: That winning a government that provides for the many, not the few, will require winning elections with candidates from the rank-and-file of our movements, organizing that builds people-powered infrastructure, and campaigns that shift the prevailing narratives and recruit people to our politics.
We adopt the following strategy to guide our political and organizing work over the next two years:

1. BUILD BLACK AND BROWN LEADERSHIP ON THE LEFT. Our only path to victory lies with recruiting people, specifically communities of color, to a shared vision and strategy. Our potential to bend politics to our vision of a more equal, humane and just society depends on mobilizing the full extent of our multi-racial, multi-ethnic and multi-lingual rank-and-file. Electoral campaigns are effective tools to do this; once elected, public officials can further mobilize, build leadership, and promote our message. We will elect candidates who know our struggles and promote our vision, values and strategic priorities, and we will emphasize the development and elevation of Black and Brown candidates on the left.

2. FIGHT FOR BOLD ALTERNATIVES TO THE STATUS QUO. UWF is made up of community and labor organizations with deep histories of fighting for working-class, racial, gender, and immigrant justice. We must continue to bring this vibrant, just, and organized militant spirit to elected office. We will use elections to define the sides of the debate between us and our opponents, backing only those candidates who are unafraid to name the brutalities of our current political arrangement and offer bold, clear and aspirational alternatives.

3. DEFEND OUR CHAMPIONS AND BUILD ORGANIZATION.  Our opposition has intentionally cultivated hopelessness and cynicism. UWF must make the argument that meaningful political change is both possible and worth the effort. We take risks knowing both the imperative of a victory and the cost of a loss, and therefore hold our candidates and elected officials to the highest standards of strategic and political practice both during and beyond any one electoral cycle. We will defend our incumbents and work with them year-round to build an organizational infrastructure that lasts beyond a single election.

4. CREATE SPACE FOR INDEPENDENT POLITICS. We recognize the crucial differences between Democrats and Republicans, and in between different Democrats. We further recognize the deep harm being done to people of color, working people, and women across Chicago and Illinois under the current regimes of Donald Trump, Bruce Rauner, and Rahm Emanuel. However, it is UWF’s unique role to expand the landscape of possibility, not promote the best option within a field of limited possibility. We make endorsements based on our hopes, not our fears. It is not our role to endorse in every race, but to win a city and a state for the many, not the few. We will out-organize our opponents, set the terms of the debate, and develop a pipeline and infrastructure that can support bold and inspiring new leadership.

2018 Membership Convention Agenda:
Saturday, September 22nd, 2018
10 am - 2 pm
@ the Chicago Teacher's Union
1901 W Carroll
10:00 - 10:20 am - Registration and Vision Setting
, introductions, and opening visioning activity
10:20 - 11:10 am - Why Now for United Working Families?
Director's Report Back and Party Committee's presentation of the 2018 Resolution to present the strategic questions on UWF's role in the current political moment and how to build a city for the many
11:10 - 11:50am - Breakout Discussions
Four breakout groups to consider planks of the 2018 Resolution, including:
- Building Black and Brown leadership on the left
- Fighting for bold alternatives to the status quo
- Defending our champions and build organization
- Creating a space for independent politics
11:50 am -12:55 pm - Strategy Debate & Lunch
Members debate on vote on amendments to the 2018 Resolution
12:55 - 1:45 pm: Bylaws Vote and Delegate Elections Members vote on updates to the bylaws and elect 6 at-large delegates to the party committee1:45-2:00 - Closing & Call to Action Next steps and closing
@ the Chicago Teacher's Lounge & Eatery
2525 West Division
See you at the Convention!