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The Bonnie Ladin Union Skills Training Program

Org I  Graduation fall14

The AFL-CIO Bonnie Ladin Union Skills (BLUS) Training Program offers weeklong intensive courses for union leaders, staff and activists that combine in-class instruction with discussions of real-world experiences shared by a diverse group of students. The main training areas include:

  • Union administration;
  • Collective bargaining (private and public sector);
  • Organizing (internal and external);
  • Arbitration and grievance handling;
  • Communications and media; and
  • Best financial practices.

BLUS courses are taught by a corps of experienced instructors, to help participants to better serve their union and community brothers and sisters. The BLUS experience brings rising union and community ally leaders together in a spirit of mutual development and camaraderie.

The program was named to honor Bonnie Ladin, who was known as an organizer’s organizer. Sadly, Bonnie passed away in August 2010 after a long battle with cancer. She was a union and social justice organizer for more than 25 years before she became a professor at the National Labor College. Bonnie touched tens of thousands of working people and organizers with the passion, focus and intelligence that she brought to her work.

Most courses are held at the Conference Center at the Maritime Institute (CCMIT), a union facility and home of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots, AFL-CIO, in Linthicum Heights, Md. CCMIT is conveniently located next to the Baltimore–Washington International Airport, Amtrak and Interstate 95.

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2015 Courses

Feb. 15–20 Negotiating and Writing Contract Language
  Instructors, Michael Mauer; Patrick Shaw
Apr. 1217 Negotiating Contracts with State and Local Governments
  Instructor, Joe Twarog
Apr. 27–May 1 Organizing I
  Instructors, Yvonne Syphax; Ayketa Iverson
June 1419 Arbitration I
  Instructors, Katherine Sciacchitano; TBD
June 1419 Presentation and Teaching Techniques II
  Instructors, Yvette de la Cruz; Kate Shaughnessy
July 13–17 New Young Staff
  Instructor, Tahir Duckett
July 26–31 Presentation and Teaching Techniques I
  Instructors, Yvette de la Cruz; Kate Shaughnessy
Sept. 1318 Contract Negotiations in the Private Sector
  Instructor, Joe Twarog
Sept. 27–Oct. 2 Arbitration I
  Instructor, Katherine Sciacchitano
Sept. 28–30 Secretary-Treasurers and Officers Fiduciary Responsibilities
  Instructors, Paul Delaine; Kevin Byrne
Sept. 28–Oct. 2 Organizing II
  Instructors, Yvonne Syphax; Patricia Recinos
Oct. 5–9 New Young Staff
  Instructor, Tahir Duckett
Nov. 1618 QuickBooks Training for Secretary-Treasurers and Union Bookkeepers
  Instructors, Paul Delaine; Kevin Byrne

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