Thank you for wanting to learn more about our Young Worker Listening Project!

Founded by lifelong trade unionist and environmental justice advocate Joe Uehlein and other co-founders, the Labor Network for Sustainability will lift up the unique perspectives of young workers through its Young Worker Listening Project. Also with the leadership of Executive Director Michael Leon Guerrero, an environmental justice organizer of more than 30 years, many national and local unions participate in LNS activities, such as the American Federation of Teachers, Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, Service Employees International Union, Amalgamated Transit Union, and many others.  

Young workers have never known a world without climate catastrophe and the debates that come along with it. That’s where we come in. We want to ensure our voices get heard in the labor and climate space.

The Labor Network for Sustainability is excited to announce the launch of the Young Worker Listening Project (YWLP) to focus on the particular experiences and needs of young workers and to engage them more deeply in our organizing.

We have started by sending out this survey with the goal of creating a pipeline to identify & build leadership among young workers in the labor and climate movements. We would love to have your participation in this project as the role you play in this movement is key to amplifying the voices of young workers.

Young Worker Listening Project In Depth


What We’re Doing

Focusing on the particular experiences and needs of young workers and to engage them more deeply in our organizing. From our recent Just Transition Listening Project, we learned there are very real generational differences in both how people understand the intersection of labor and climate issues and what they need for a just transition.

Young workers have never known a world without climate catastrophe and the debates that come along with it. We are often caught in the middle of these debates, and have taken action through ongoing movement building as evidenced by the Climate Strikes of 2019. We face an uncertain future, with the health of our planet and communities and the security of our jobs becoming increasingly precarious, especially for those who hoped to have long-term careers in fossil fuels and other carbon-intensive industries. We know that it’s past time to create big and bold solutions and that our voices need to be central in these efforts. Our project intends to build the spokespeople the labor and climate movements need to articulate and fight for the visions of young workers.

This project has three goals:
 

  1. To amplify the voices of young workers
  2. To identify & develop leadership in the labor and climate movements
  3. To develop a narrative strategy through small group discussions in partnership with the Center for Story Based Strategy

How We’re Going to Do It

We are creating a pipeline to identify & build leadership among young workers in the labor and climate movements:

  • Survey: Starting Thursday, April 29, we will be disseminating a survey to collect basic information about young workers’ experiences. 
  • One-on-one interviews: Over the summer, we will interview people identified from the survey responses to better understand what is important to them, and how they might engage more deeply in labor-climate activism.
  • Small-group discussions: In the fall, we will begin small-group discussions with interviewees in partnership with the Center for Story Based Strategy.

How You Can Help

From now until September, if you’re under the age of 35, please take 5 minutes to complete this survey.

Also, please use this social media toolkit to help share the survey and spread the word about YWLP. As the project builds, the YWLP would like to continue to work with you and check-in on how this effort can advance our collective goals.

Organizing Committee

  • Teresa Marie Oller, American Postal Workers Union, Portland, Oregon
  • Travis Epes, American Postal Workers Union, Portland, Oregon
  • Crystal Herrera, International Brotherhood of Workers Local 11
  • Celina Barron, International Brotherhood of Workers Local 11
  • Ryan Pollock, International Brotherhood of Workers Local 520
  • Maria Brescia-Weiler, Labor Network for Sustainability
  • Leo Blain, Labor Network for Sustainability

Young Worker Project Organizer: Joshua Dedmond, Labor Network for Sustainability