The political department is the union’s voice in politics at the local, regional, state and federal levels. The department promotes and keeps track of all kinds of legislation affecting the membership. It coordinates the union’s activities during elections, like phone banking and precinct walks and organizes the screening and endorsement of candidates seeking Local 5’s seal of approval.
Most decisions that have an immediate impact on members happen at the local level. Local 5’s political focus has shifted, for the most part, to the local level because that’s where decisions are made that make a difference in the everyday lives of members. The late Speaker of the US House of Representatives Tip O’Neil had it right when he quipped “all politics is local.” Decisions on land made by city and county planning boards determine what kind of retail development takes place, city councils and boards of supervisors decide whether or not food processing plants are allowed to operate and under what conditions and the same bodies rule on development on agricultural land. It is important for the protection and growth of union jobs that members involve themselves in the local decision making process.
For more information contact:
Communications & Political Director,