A Message From Danny Donohue
CSEA has led the way for working people in New York for a century.
We're proud of all we've accomplished over the past 100 years, thanks to the thousands of CSEA leaders and activists who helped get us where we are today. But, in order to guarantee our future success we need to develop a new generation of activists to carry the torch forward.
More than half of all CSEA members are over age 50 and will be eligible to retire within the next 10 years. That will mean the loss of many of our seasoned leaders and activists.
That's why CSEA and our international union, AFSCME, have launched an ambitious new initiative to identify and inspire young members to step up and become the leaders of the future.
I encourage you to find your place in your union by joining CSEA's Next Wave initiative. We need your energy and enthusiasm to make sure CSEA remains New York's leading union for the next hundred years.
"I got involved because I needed to know that my opinion matters. The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow, so we all need to take an
active role in our destiny."
Kingsboro Psych Center Local 402
"Who do you want to determine your future? We are at a crossroads and you can either have the fortitude to determine your own or stand by idly and have someone else determine it for you. Our local has recognized the need and that is why we have started our own Next Wave group."
Cattaraugus County Local 805
"The Next Wave gave us the power we thought we didn't have. It's giving the youth a voice in our local.''
Guild for Exceptional Children Local 766
I've wanted to change the mentality towards the younger generation and use the enthusiasm, youthfulness and eagerness to learn to better everyone's career. Since joining Next Wave, I have furthered this cause in my local and become a more involved CSEA activist and a new officer."
SUNY Cortland Local 605
"Have you ever wondered what the future of CSEA looks like?
Look at our faces. We are the future of CSEA! We will be the ones to carry the baton, fighting to maintain and protect the benefits our predecessors have fought for."
Nassau County Local 830
Goals of the Next Wave
- To promote activism among young members
- To create enthusiasm for Organized Labor in young members
- To provide support for young members in the unique issues that they face
- To create opportunities for young members to learn about the rich history of the Labor Movement
- To connect young members with the political system upon which they can have influence
- To create leadership training opportunities for young members
How to Build a CSEA Next Wave Committee
Talk to your local/unit president and other young union members to see if there's interest in starting a Next Wave group
Start building a network in your worksite: How? Ask for help! Don't just focus on under 35ers — ask seasoned union members to help you find potential committee members
Once you have your committee:
- Find a focus for your group
- Have regular meetings
- You can switch between focusing on education, networking, social events and hosting guest speakers
AFSCME Next Wave Conference in Detroit
We all know that CSEA members and working families are under attack. We have come together, as a union and a nation, to stand up for workers' rights and public services – and young workers are on the front-lines of these fights. As we move forward, the role that young members play in our union will be more important than ever.
This year, we went to the heart of the recent attacks against us: Michigan. This winter, Gov. Rick Snyder rammed a right-to-work (for-less) bill through – after robbing communities of their democratic rights with his Local Dictator Law – and workers across the state are suffering. We held our third Next Wave conference July 12-14 in Detroit to address the needs of new and young AFSCME activists.
- Learn more about the specific role of young union leaders in AFSCME and the labor movement to fight the attacks we are under in every state.
- Exchange strategies and tactics to fight back and win.
- Roll up their sleeves and do some direct action to combat Governor Snyder's continuous attacks on Michigan workers.
- Hear from leaders in the labor movement and progressive allies.
Long Island Region 1
Long Island Region 1
Jarvis "Tim" Brown
Metropolitan Region 2
Metropolitan Region 2
Southern Region 3
Central Region 5
Western Region 6