EARN in the Midwest Grant Awards

2021 Grant Recipients

Iowa: Common Good Iowa and the Center for Worker Justice of Eastern Iowa will be working on labor standards in the construction industry. The grant selection team liked how the project understood the barriers to helping working families in Iowa, and how this partnership has already demonstrated an ability to engage with workers of color and their families, at the worksite, at the home, and in the community.

Michigan: The Michigan League for Public Policy and Detroit Action will be working on state level actions to combat preemption, and building towards local Community Benefits Agreements in low-wage jobs in Detroit. The grant selection team liked the strong emphasis on building power in Black and Brown communities in Detroit, the ambition of the proposal, and the dual city/state focus.

Missouri: The Missouri Budget Project and Missouri Jobs with Justice will be organizing families of color in support of a statewide initiative for paid sick time. The team liked the partnership’s commitment to building a true “pipeline” for Black and Brown folks to come to work for their two organizations and appreciated that the proposal built on what has worked before in Missouri, while stretching the scope of the EARN group’s work in a way that will help them learn new skills and develop deeper expertise on economic justice issues not immediately connected to the state legislature.

Ohio: Policy Matters Ohio, the Cincinnati Interfaith Workers Center, the Central Ohio Workers Center, and the Northeast Ohio Workers Center will be combining local and statewide efforts to enforce labor standards and create stronger organizations of workers in Columbus and Cleveland. The team admired the long record of success by the Cincinnati group, and saw value in helping to spread that model to other cities in the state. The team also liked how Policy Matters Ohio was not simply going to hire another researcher but would take on a coordinating role across all three cities to help unify efforts and develop a shared narrative. 

Wisconsin: COWS (Center on Wisconsin Strategy), Kids Forward, and MASHWorkers (Milwaukee Area Service and Hospitality Workers) will be working towards sectoral bargaining or community benefits agreements for service and leisure hospitality workers in and around Milwaukee. The team appreciated the clear-eyed analysis of the possible the partnership had and was intrigued by MASHWorkers plan to create a dozen two-month fellowships for its worker members to organize full time for short bursts.