ACLU of Kansas workers have solidified their mission of protecting and expanding constitutional rights in their own workplace by unionizing with the United Media Guild, Local 36047. On Tuesday, June 23rd, the workers filed for an election with the National Labor Relations Board, though ACLU of Kansas’ Executive Director, Nadine Johnson, was notified and could have chosen to recognize their union at any time since June 12.
ACLU workers were disappointed that Johnson didn’t opt to verify their majority support by a simple card check, as the union had also offered but she has declined that course of action as well. That left the union no option but to file for a formal election with the NLRB.
This is the largest nonprofit of its kind to unionize in the state of Kansas. In their ongoing work defending democracy in Kansas, ACLU of Kansas employees are thrilled to continue the tradition of solidarity and champion democratic protections in their own workplace.
“The ACLU has a long and storied history of fighting for the rights of every American and the United Media Guild is proud to stand with our sisters and brothers performing such heroic and valuable work,” said Shannon Duffy, Business Representative for the United Media Guild – CWA. “We are, however, disappointed that the organization’s management missed an opportunity to live its values and clearly and unequivocally demonstrate its commitment to worker’s rights. Nevertheless, we are confident that, once this process is over and a union is in place, we will be able to enjoy a productive relationship with this organization.”
In recent years, there has been a wave of nonprofit workers voluntarily associating with labor unions. Locally, there are a number of nonprofits across the Missouri border who are represented by UMG- CWA, Local 36047, such as Missouri Jobs with Justice, Fight For 15, Missouri Health Care For All, and Missouri Organizing and Voter Engagement Collaborative (MOVE). The ACLU of Kansas affiliate is the largest organization and perhaps the first of its kind to unionize in Kansas.
The workers believe this new association will strengthen the organization by giving their voice more democratic representation while leading the statewide landscape in further protecting civil rights for all. Similarly, other ACLU affiliates have unionized across the country, including Massachusetts, Northern California, and Southern California.