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Regional Green Party Campaign School Coming to NYC; Should They Expand to Minimum-Wage-Boost Ballot Initiatives?

A invitation for my area was emailed yesterday:

Learn how to be a candidate or serve an essential role on a campaign team.

Green Campaign Schools focus on building skills at all levels:

. assembling a campaign team
. creating effective campaign literature
. raising money
. financial reporting
. media campaigns
. the role of the candidate
. setting and working toward goals, and much, much more!

RSVP now online, space is limited!

March 23
Registration for the day starts at 9:30am. Program runs from 10am-6pm.

The LGBT Center
208 W 13th St
New York, NY 10011

Gloria Mattera – – 917-866-4538

$20 suggested donation at the door (sliding scale for students, unemployed) to cover the costs for venue rental, travel, and educational materials.

I’m not a member of the Green Party, and don’t follow it closely. However….. it appears to me that they are not focusing enough on creative ways to recruit. Sure, campaigns can and should be used to recruit not just voters, but especially leaders and what I call ‘worker bees’. However, there are many ways to skin a cat.

I’ve written, before, about the need to resucitate the ongoing, very public aspect of Occupy, but with without illegal encampments. And, how the GP (or any group, for that matter) that helped do so could then use such a movement to recruit. As long as this is all above board, and you don’t try and interfere with other groups that want to recruit, this is completely honorable. Cititizens NEED a way to forge both temporary and long-term alliances with groups that they also oppose. Whether the haters of the left or of the right care to admit it or not, they are stuck in the same lifeboat, swirling down the same plutocrat-induced drain.

Today, I’ll mention another ‘tangential’ activity that the Green Party members could take a lead role in organizing, that I read about just yesterday: ballot iniatives to boost low paid workers. Before I give the link and quote, I want to emphasize that it’s completely honorable for the Green Party (or any other group) to frame and ‘advertise’ their efforts at organizing a ballot initiative, as an aspect of recruitment. In fact, I’d say that they’d be stupid if they didn’t do so.

From Low-wage workers turning to voters for pay raises

For decades, Long Beach hotel workers fought for better wages.

But their efforts to start unions mostly fizzled. So last year, union backers tried something new: a ballot measure.

Voters swiftly gave them what years of picket lines and union-card drives had failed to secure — a $13-per-hour minimum wage for hundreds of Long Beach hotel workers.

A similar shift happened in San Jose, where voters in November awarded workers a higher minimum wage not just in hotels, but citywide. The victories put these two California cities on the cusp of an emerging trend: Ballot initiatives, labor experts say, have the potential to rewrite labor’s playbook for how to win concessions from management.

Long Beach and San Jose join a list of cities nationwide where voters, not unions, have won workers higher wages, demonstrating the power of this new labor tactic.

Any group – whether the Green Party, or other – that takes a lead in organizing such ballot initiatives shouldn’t be shy about asking for continuing support. I worked for many years as a waiter, and my sub-minimum wage + tips barely climbed more than $1.00-$2.00/hour over minimum wage. If somebody had approached me to sign a petition for increasing my wages, but pointed out that they needed help to create a sustainable movement that was looking to give everybody a decent wage, affordable health care, yada, yada, I certainly would be inclined to listen.

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