As one of the fastest-growing regions in the United States, the South presents a newfound opportunity to upend how workers are treated, valued, and recognized within our economy. To achieve this vision, however, it is critical to address the current conditions that have delayed progress for workers for far too long, especially for women, people of color, and low-income households.
These opportunities inspired the launch of the Southern Workers Opportunity (SWO) Fund, marking a significant development to strengthen workers’ rights across the U.S. South. The Fund, backed by the nation’s leading labor federations and philanthropic institutions, and with a goal of raising $20 million, is part of a broader movement to build a democratic economy centered around worker power, dignified workplace conditions, and that fully values workers as people first.
The time is ripe to seize the moment and launch a bold, democratic, intersectional, and inclusive Southern strategy of worker empowerment.