Community Development

Cross-posted from Truth Out

A quiet revolution is rumbling through New York's municipal offices as they retool to support the creation of worker cooperatives as a way to fight poverty.

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Today, corporate profits are at an all-time high and employee wages are at their lowest ever as a percent of GDP.i Worker cooperatives embody the hope that we can reverse the downward spiral in wage stagnation, wealth distribution, and concentration of ownership to build an economy that truly serves people and communities.

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[Editor's Note: the following is excerpted from Jessica Gordon Nembhard, 2014, Benefits and Impacts of Cooperatives. White Paper, February 2014. You can find the full report  here.]

 

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In 1998 Clyde Woods wrote, in his path breaking book Development Arrested, that

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A continuing conversation with Thomas M. Hanna of the Democracy Collaborative, cross posted from Cooperate and No One Gets Hurt

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This keynote address by Robin Seydel from the 2011 California Cooperative Conference deserves to be widely seen.

The debate over who lost Detroit and how to fix it rages on while Politico reports in “Break-up-the-big-banks fever hits the states” that legislators from “at least 18 states have introduced resolutions this year calling on Congress to split up banking giants by putting back in place a wall between commercial banking, taking deposits and making loans, and investment banking, the world of traders and deal-makers.” It turns out that quarantining the banksters and salvag

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The video embedded in the full story below is a session with David Harvey, a prolific author championing Freedom of the City and David Graeber, the Occupy Activist, Anarchist, Anthropologist. The videw is almost an hour and a half and both authors take substantial time to provide context on both the books and their feelings about #occupy. Harvey's book is Rebel Cities and Graeber's is Debt: The First 5000 Years. There is a lot of good thought and support for co-operative action and power.

Go to the full article for the video:

 

Energia in Holyoke, MA is a multi-stakeholder cooperative

(Photo courtesy of Cooperative Fund of New England)

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Nicole Foss, an economist and writer on the coming problems of resource depletion, is touring Australia and New Zealand. She posted an article with the title above on The Automatic Earth. The topic is really cooperation (small "C" cooperation) but it talks to the values of cooperation in general. Most important, cooperation is a productive, feel-good activity in this telling and that makes it worth the read and watching the embedded video.

The Mayor of Richmond, California, Gayle McLaughlin, recently held a public presentation why she believes Mondragon should serve as a guiding example for how economic development should proceed in her city.
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At the conclusion of the seminar, Mondragon's Director of Cooperative Dissemination, Mikel Lezamiz, and I signed a letter of intent and endorsement to pave the way for initiating conversations with stakeholders in Richmond and beyond.  I want to share with you what I learned and also hear your ideas.
To this end I would like to invite all who are interested to a presentation and discussion on Mondragon and the potential for worker cooperatives in Richmond.  The same presentation will be given on two dates...
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Below is a report from Steve Rice (volunteer with the Network of Bay Area Worker Cooperatives  [NoBAWC]), Poonam Whabi (Design Action Collective), and Rick Simon (Just Alternatives for a Sustainable Economy) on the Worker Co-operative component of the Congress.  This component calls on local government to...

 

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An article in The Nation magazine tells how Boston's Green Justice Coalition is creating "a model to connect the struggle for environmental justice with the fight for living-wage jobs, helping to lay the groundwork for a new generation of community-labor coalitions across the country."
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The Evergreen cooperatives in Cleveland, Ohio was the story everyone wanted to hear at the opening session on Saturday Aug. 7, 2010 of the U.S. Federation for Worker Cooperatives conference in Berkeley. 

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