Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy 2017
June 9 @ 9:00 am - June 11 @ 5:00 pm
The Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy (ECWD) is fast approaching and its timing could not be better! This year’s conference will be held on June 9-11 in New York City in partnership with NYC Network of Worker Cooperatives (NYCNoWC). The ECWD is the longest running conference focused on workplace democracy in the United States. The three-day conference will provide an important nexus point for the cooperative movement, enabling the sharing of resources, practical tools and knowledge, contacts and inspiration amongst worker-owners, developers, technical assistance providers, coop financiers and others. We know from years of experience that the conference is a catalyst for many looking to join the movement, and thus is critical to the future of cooperative businesses.
Given the current political climate, we intend to center the experiences of people whose rights are most threatened by the current administration. As we move forward, we will need to tackle strategic concerns around immigration, policing and criminal justice, health care, climate justice, cyber security, and more as they impact our workplaces and communities. This year’s conference theme of “Resist and Transform” focuses on the potential for cooperatives to be a tool for both resistance in these volatile times as well as a building block for transforming our economy and society. The theme will challenge conference participants to engage in a dialogue around the current political climate as well as how worker-owned businesses can successfully plan for future growth both within and across sectors, utilize partnerships and connections to build skills and reach new communities, and collectively continue to strengthen the movement locally and beyond. We’ll share inspiring stories—along with obstacles—of how this is happening in our region and elsewhere in the country or abroad.
The conference will be held at Fordham University Lincoln Center, an urban campus accessibly located in Manhattan at 150 W 62nd St, New York, NY 10023. NYC is home to the largest worker cooperatives in the country, and to a growing worker cooperative movement. In recent years, the local government has invested substantially in the development of cooperatives, recognizing them as a viable tool for economic development and the creation of quality jobs in diverse communities.