Frequently asked questions about ALCs

  1. What is the AFL-CIO?
  2. What is an area labor council (ALC)?
  3. Who belongs to ALCs?
  4. Why do we need to affiliate with an ALC? Aren't we already affiliated with the AFL-CIO?
  5. How does affiliating with an ALC benefit our local?
  6. What does the ALC do that my local can’t do for itself?
  7. I’m a busy local president. Do I have to be my local’s representative?
  8. What happens at an ALC meeting?
  9. How does my local become involved in an ALC?
  10. What if my local was already affiliated prior to the Education Minnesota affiliating all locals?
  11. Who will pay the affiliation fees?
     

What is the AFL-CIO?
The AFL-CIO is the umbrella organization of 57 national and international labor unions that represent 12.2 million working people. The AFL-CIO provides information to working people about issues that affect their daily lives, and encourages them to make their voice heard for a government that works for working families. It makes sure members have the latest union facts and news on workers’ rights.

What is an area labor council (ALC)?
An ALC is the umbrella organization of local unions. ALCs support political, organizing and issue-oriented campaigns by mobilizing — and growing — a network of committed union volunteers.

Who belongs to ALCs?
ALCs are made up of local unions grouped by geographical regions. ALCs have a diverse membership, from electricians, heavy equipment operators and retail employees to teachers, nurses and firefighters.

Why do we need to affiliate with an ALC? Aren’t we already affiliated with the AFL-CIO?
All Education Minnesota members are affiliated with the AFL-CIO and Minnesota AFL-CIO. ALCs provide the services to help locals organize politically and build relationships with their local community. ALCs provide direct services to locals that the AFL-CIO can’t at a local level.

How does affiliating with an ALC benefit our local?
ALCs provide locals assistance in organizing politically, helping with labor relation issues and building relationships with other labor unions in the community.

What does the ALC do that my local can’t do for itself?
ALCs have staff that can help locals organize political, legislative or labor-relation events. ALCs can coordinate events with other unions and community groups to provide locals more support.

I’m a busy local president. Do I have to be my local’s representative?
Though local president’s involvement in their ALC is important, they do not have to be the local’s representative. Locals should designate a member who can consistently attend ALC meetings and functions.

What happens at an ALC meeting?
ALC meetings discuss labor, political, legislative and community issues that affect affiliates. Numerous committees plan and carry out initiatives that have been approved by the ALC central body.

How does my local become involved in an ALC?
All locals have been affiliated with their ALC by Education Minnesota. Locals willing to participate need to contact their ALC to notify them who will be representing them at meetings.

What if my local was affiliated prior to the Education Minnesota action affiliating all locals?
Education Minnesota pays annual dues of $3 per member per year. Locals that are already affiliated can choose to either pay $3 less per year or continue to pay the amount they are paying depending on whether they are at full affiliation or not.

Who will pay the affiliation fees?
Education Minnesota pays $3 per member per year ($.25 per month). Depending on which ALC your local is affiliated with, your local may voluntarily pay additional fees to be fully affiliated. Though it is voluntary, Education Minnesota recommends that all locals fully affiliate.