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At EARNCon, we will convene members from our 55 EARN groups, representing 43 states and the District of Columbia, together with grassroots organizers and labor partners, for much-needed community building after two years of isolation in the pandemic and to develop a shared agenda for state and local policymaking that prioritizes the needs of workers and their families, builds power among workers and communities, and centers Black and Brown people.

We are excited to host EARNCon in Cleveland, a city that for much of its history has been synonymous with innovation and progress. It’s the city where the term “Rock and Roll” was coined, where the first electrified public square was illuminated, and the first automobile was sold. In 1967, it became the first major city in the United States to elect a Black mayor.

During EARNCon, attendees will discuss the most pressing issues confronting workers leading into 2023, ranging from wages and labor standards to climate. The conference will provide a launch point for research and policy development that centers workers, communities of color, and women and serves to advance legislation that improves labor standards and strengthens worker power. This year, we will highlight the wave of unionization and labor organizing that has spread throughout the country and discuss what it means for state and local policymaking.

The work ahead of us is ambitious as we focus on an equitable recovery for all workers and center those that have kept our economy running through a challenging pandemic. We hope you will join us and your fellow network leaders in economics, policy, labor, academia, and community organizing to develop ideas and strategies for building worker power, improving job quality, and building equitable state and local economies.

Click here to view additional details about EARNCon, including our mandatory COVID-19 protocols.

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Pre-conference Session: EARN Executive Directors’ Strategy Meeting

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

The Executive Directors’ Strategy Meeting is an opportunity for leaders from the network to strengthen relationships; learn about their peers’ work; learn about EPI’s projects and plans for EARN; and strategize together on how we can drive progressive economic and racial justice policymaking at the state and local level.

Pre-conference Session: Data Bootcamp

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

In this session, participants will use CPS data to perform analyses in statistical software packages Stata and R.

EARNCon Plenary: Welcome and introductions, Keynote address: Liz Shuler, and Panel discussion: Rebuilding worker power and civic engagement in Ohio

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

During this plenary, speakers will welcome EARN groups to the conference and set the stage for what is to come. Panelists will discuss the history of the labor movement in Cleveland and draw parallels between unionization campaigns in Ohio and the rest of the country.

EARNCon Plenary: Voices from the frontlines of new union organizing: Worker power, state policy, and racial, gender, and economic justice

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

This session will feature workers sharing their motivations and strategies for organizing new unions in public services, health care, and other frontline occupations, while illustrating opportunities to expand state and local policies that advance worker power.

Tracking the demands of the civil rights movement from the 1960s till today

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

This session will inform conference attendees of the policies, strategies, and actions advocated for during the March on Washington and the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s and then to use these social policy requests as a metric to determine which policies were implemented, which have yet to be realized, and what this means for racial economic justice. 

EARNCon Session: The role of local government in advancing and protecting workers’ rights

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

Speakers Danielle Alvarado, Fair Work Center Teri Castillo, San Antonio City Council District 5 Terri Gerstein, Harvard Labor and Worklife Program and Economic Policy Institute LiJia Gong, Local Progress Mazahir Salih, Center for Worker Justice of Eastern Iowa   Session Description This session will provide an overview of all of the different ways (even when […]

EARNCon Session: Striking Back: Reorganizing in Right-to-Work States

The Westin Cleveland Downtown 777 Saint Clair Avenue Northeast, Cleveland

This session aims to inform EARNCON attendees about strategies that policymakers and advocates are using to advance pro-worker policymaking and supporting the labor movement at the state and local level, with an emphasis on states with anti-labor policies in place, such as “Right-to-Work” laws.

The Economic Policy Institute would like to thank the following funders for their ongoing and generous support for the Economic Analysis and Research Network (EARN): 
  • Anonymous  
  • AFL-CIO
  • AFSCME 
  • American Federation of Teachers 
  • Bernard and Anne Spitzer Charitable Trust 
  • Ford Foundation  
  • International Association of Machinists  
  • International Brotherhood of Teamsters
  • Kresge Foundation  
  • National Association of Letter Carriers  
  • National Education Association 
  • Marguerite Casey Foundation 
  • Omidyar Network
  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • The Rockefeller Foundation
  • Service Employees International Union 
  • Surdna Foundation 
  • UNITE HERE 
  • United Auto Workers  
  • United Brotherhood of Carpenters 
  • United Food and Commercial Workers 
  • United Steelworkers of America 
  • W.K. Kellogg Foundation

EARNCon 2022

September 28-30

We are thrilled about the prospect of seeing you and hope you’ll join us this year in Cleveland at the Westin Cleveland Downtown from Wednesday, September 28 – Friday, September 30, 2022.