Welcome to the national CWA Political Activist Training portal. All materials associated with this training have been created for the movement to build worker power and are therefore governed under copyleft and creative commons sharing etiquette.Please feel free to download and to utilize the material with the intention of creating space to build people power, not to gain profit. The proper process for notifying CWA Political of your download is specified below.
(Copyleft – an arrangement whereby software or artistic work may be used, modified, and distributed freely on condition that anything derived from it is bound by the same condition.)
(Creative Common (CC) – One of several public copyright licenses that enable the free distribution of an otherwise copyrighted work. A CC license is used when an author wants to give people the right to share, use, and build upon a work that he/she has created.)
These digital materials do not have union bugs on them. In the event that any of the materials offered on this site are printed, all materials must be produced by a union printing source.
In order to ensure that CWA can have a general awareness of the downloaders and users of the training material, after the download button is clicked there will be a short form which must be completed before the official downloading of the material can commence. Once you have downloaded the material, we would also like to know if you have made additional modifications/additions to our work, so that we could possibly include those on our site as alternative options to our original training.
The Communications Workers of America (CWA) has launched a political education & leadership development program to articulate a uniform standard of skill sets across the national union to build, fight, and win for working people. The political activist training creates an ideological frame that unites all CWA political activists, creates an easy entry-point for new activists to get involved and also re-energizes our existing labor leaders and activists. Since 2013, the national CWA Political Program has been strengthening the working-class power of the union through training the membership to engage with the obstacles of our national reality and political economy today. This program serves membership who crave a deeper understanding of the political structures that impact our economic and social reality and how we can begin to build a working class movement that will transform this country so that everyone can live a life with dignity and justice.
Today, we have seen the largest redistribution of wealth in our nation’s history, a Great Recession that has paralyzed communities and the lowest unionized workforce in decades. Still, many believe the losses working families have experienced are a force of nature and not created by people and institutions in power. Most importantly this training urges members to take action; by making it clear that if we — working people — don’t change our power relationship with the corporate power structures, then we are promised nothing more than the continued dwindling of the Labor Movement’s effectiveness and relevance.
This training is a tool for getting people involved in campaigns in their communities and states to bolster the interests of the working class above those of big corporations. It is through organizing and mobilizing CWA internally that the training has been successful at radically improving the membership’s organizing capacity. This has yielded a surge in the number of CWA activists, skills of these activists, people-power-building through our Political Action Fund (PAF), major local elections wins for progressive candidates who support CWA, and the working class struggle. The training teaches the importance of union engagement in broad social movements to build strong coalition and solidarity across rank and file struggles. We seek to build up a movement that fights on all fronts and all issues that impact the working class, from collective bargaining to voting rights, racial and gender justice, LGBTQIA rights and respect for the earth we live on. There are many fronts we must fight on, but one movement we are a part of.
The CWA Political Activist Training was first conceived after the 2012 election cycle by the National Political Director Rafael Návar when it was clear that there was a need for a larger and more sophisticated activist program that had a consciousness-raising component at its core. That said there have been many who have dedicated a tremendous amount of time, energy and creativity to make this program a reality and the subsequent revisions that have resulted in the curriculum you are reading today. We would especially like to lift up Osunbunmi Asili who has spent tireless hours leading the current revision process that included significant contributions from Kevin Cooper, Melissa Matos, Kate Shaughnessy, Daniel Carrillo, Hayden Mora, Margarita Hernandez, Derrick Osobase, Adrian Acosta, Bob Master, Rosita Lopez and many others.