Dear LIFT community,
We wish you all the best in this late summer moment. Reflecting on the Labor Day holiday, we are in awe of the work of our incredible grantee partners that are shaping the 21st century’s worker movement in the U.S. – like Adhikaar and Workers United’s work pushing forward the Nail Salon Minimum Standards Council Act and how Rural & Migrant Ministries, RWDSU, and UFCW Local 338 worked to ensure the passage and signing of the Farm Laborer Fair Labor Practices Act (FLFLPA) into law in New York State. As we head into the fall, we want to make sure that we share important LIFT Fund updates with you, and acknowledge how much of this work would not be possible without our valued funder partners’ support to advance the labor movement.
Since the beginning of 2022, we:
- Welcomed Marjona Jones as the Director of Strategy and Programs and Melinda Wiggins as Director of Strategy and Operations. Their experience and capacity will be invaluable as we enter a phase of increased grantmaking and partnership development.
- Launched the Southern Workers Opportunity Fund (SWO)focused on building the power of Black and Brown workers in the South. Our first round of grantmaking is in the process to support groups in Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi.
- Hosted a two-day learning journey in Tennessee in May of 2022 for national and local funders as well as other partners with the goals of deepening alignment between philanthropic, community, and labor sectors.
- Built up our language justice capacity by making key SWO grantmaking materials available in Spanish, offering a bilingual information session, and giving applicants the option to submit their proposals in Spanish or English.
- Published Family Child Care and Community Power: The Partnership Between New Jersey Communities United and CWA Local 1037 by Sanjay Pinto, Ph.D., which presents key strategies and offers recommendations for addressing the concerns of childcare workers and their communities. Documenting learning and case studies is a part of the feedback loop for those trying out new practices or hoping to scale initiatives.
- Featured LIFT’s work in the news! You can read about LIFT’s efforts in Inside Philanthropy. Read about the SWO Fund in Foundations embrace organized labor with $20 million plan published in Associated Press, and Spotlight on Poverty and Opportunity, and hear directly from LIFT Fund Executive Director Jennifer Epps in a Washington Post Live interview on Thursday, September 8.
- Initiated this newsletter as a way of sharing information more regularly with you, and the rest of our community. We plan to keep this up every few months.
Please enjoy the images and summaries below, click on the links for more details, and reach out to us for more information about anything that you see.
The LIFT Fund Team
Jennifer Epps, Executive Director
Jennifer Muñoz, Program Coordinator
Marjona Jones, Director of Strategy and Programs
Melinda Wiggins, Director of Strategy and Operations