Bargaining for the Common Good

Bargaining for the Common Good

What is Bargaining for the Common Good?

Bargaining for the Common Good (BCG) is an innovative organizing approach where public sector unions use collective bargaining as an opportunity to organize local stakeholders around a set of demands that benefit not just the bargaining unit, but the wider community as a whole. In these campaigns, labor and the community are equal partners who work together to build public support for revenue solutions that will allow us to rebuild our communities, adequately fund public services, and protect quality middle class public sector jobs.

How does Bargaining for the Common Good fit into Education?

Parents and families are among our most valuable and essential allies in supporting public education and public school employees. By broadening this partnership, we better serve our students, and we better meet the community’s needs. Securing bargaining victories for our students and our members will ensure that students have the schools that they deserve.

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What are the principles of Bargaining for the Common Good? 

There are three primary principles of BCG:

  • Participants consciously attempt to broaden traditional legal frameworks around bargaining;
  • Unions and community allies jointly craft bargaining demands that think of campaigns as steps in a long-term strategy of worker empowerment;
  • Collective action and – occasionally – even civil disobedience, will likely be necessary to fight against the powerful trends that have been promoting inequality and undermining democracy.

BCG does not happen overnight; it involves deep, conscientious engagement with members, potential members, and community partners. It is a shift from a transactional bargaining approach to one where our members can fundamentally transform locals and shift power to the hands of the educators, their families, and their communities.

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