Magazine article International Musician

When We Fight, We Win!

Magazine article International Musician

When We Fight, We Win!

Article excerpt

It is with great humility and a renewed sense of purpose that I begin this message to you as a newly elected member of the AFM International Executive Board. I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to thank all of the delegates who supported my candidacy. I pledge to work on behalf of all locals, whether large or small, and all constituencies, be they symphonic or recording, freelance, or somewhere in between.

In thinking about what would be the proper message for my first IM communication to you, I asked myself, what are some of the biggest challenges facing our union today? The answer may vary from local to local, but the three issues that I believe are consistent across our Federation are: loss of membership, diminished and reduced employment opportunities, and apathy. The phenomenon we see throughout the Federation as our older musicians pass on, is not recruiting new members at the same pace as we lose our seniors. I see this trend at Local 47, even with ongoing programs to attract new members and efforts to bring new work under contract.

I am convinced that success in growing our union lies in organizing. We will only grow through internal and external organizing- building upon the ranks of existing members and organizing potential members. What does this mean? For me, it means working with our committees and rank-and-file leaders to strengthen bargaining units in order to fight the growth of nonunion work, whether in the recording realm, classical chamber music, or jazz gigs. …

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