IAM Organizers Chart Path for Future of Union Growth

IAM International President Bob Martinez speaks to a group of organizers at the William W. Winpisinger Education Center in Hollywood, MD to map out a plan to grow the IAM’s membership.

More than 50 IAM organizers from across North America, including International President Bob Martinez, came together recently at the William W. Winpisinger Education and Technology Center in Hollywood, MD to plan how the union will organize new members today and in the future.

WATCH: Paving a Path for Union Growth

Thanks to special interest groups and their endless attacks unions, organizing new members has proven to be a challenge across the labor movement, but the IAM has seen success in certain sectors. To build on those successes, and learn from failed campaigns, the Machinists Union is taking a new approach in organizing that includes using new technology like never before.

“We’re really looking at all phases of social media as well as electronic signatures for electronic authorization cards,” said IAM Organizing Director Don Barker. “We currently have 34 different campaigns going on in the U.S. where we’re using electronic authorizations, which we feel are just another tool to put in our tool box to move forward.”

New tools and technology will not replace personal contact and relationship building however, which are crucial to recruiting new IAM members. The organizing summit is the first of several planned at the Winpisinger Center to develop a cutting-edge organizing philosophy and a plan of action for the future.

“The people who came before us built this union and it’s up to us to continue to grow,” said Barker.