I decided after the election last year that I was going to be more politically involved because I need to. So I ran for an office (treasurer) in my union local. And I won, because no one else was running. But then we arranged for me to put off taking over because I was away.
So this week was take over week. There've been meetings.
And what I noticed: leftist men talk over me just like non-leftist men.
We are all white (officer group). We need to change that. Every single officer would agree. But no one had taken even the minimal step of offering support at the community MLK day event. Or at the Juneteenth event. (The list goes on.) First, the union should be there offering support because we should support these events. Second, the union should be there offering support so that folks see that we're there. Because we should be supporting these events. And so on.
Being new, I seem to have some energy that time has worn out of the others. I should take advantage of that while I can.
I did, in fact. I used my new connection with staff folks (I had lunch with the person I met at the professional development day) to ask who's in charge of new faculty/academic staff orientation, and emailed that person asking if the union could have 10-15 minutes of time, or at least if we could set up a table to introduce people to the union. The person in charge responded enthusiastically.
The union has no actual power because of state laws. But we can do things that would be helpful to people. For example, we can help organize people to work on phone banks, and the union temple in town has equipment and so forth.
It took us an hour to go to the bank to do the signature hand over, and we couldn't actually do it because the prior secretary and current president didn't think to ask what paperwork we needed (and neither did I), so we didn't have the paperwork. Duh.
At any rate, I expect I'll be blogging a bit about being more active in the union now.