Masks are required at in-person event at IAM 751’s Seattle hall
Delegates and alternates planning to attend this convention should visit the WSLC 2022 COPE Convention page.
SEATTLE (March 23, 2022) — The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO — the state’s largest union organization representing the interests of some 600 labor organizations with more than 550,000 members — will hold its 2022 Committee on Political Education (COPE) Endorsing Convention starting at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 21 at the Machinists District 751 Hall, 9125 15th Pl. South in Seattle.
It is at this convention that hundreds of delegates representing WSLC-affiliated unions from across the state will vote on endorsements for congressional, statewide, state legislative and judicial candidates, plus state ballot measures.
Unlike corporations and business groups, organized labor has an open and democratic process by which candidates and ballot measures earn union support, and rank-and-file members are encouraged to participate. Candidates seeking endorsement participate in a process that includes questionnaires and interviews with local unions and regional Central Labor Councils. Those local union organizations then make recommendations for the state convention to consider and vote upon on May 21. WSLC endorsements require a two-thirds majority vote.
Also unlike corporations and industry groups — which outspend unions about 24-to-1 on politics — labor’s support doesn’t just come in the form of a check. It comes in the form of volunteers who do household walks, worksite leafleting, and make personal (not automated) phone calls to other voters. Plus, it includes direct mail and other forms of political outreach intended to explain why endorsed candidates and ballot measures have earned labor’s support.
TAKE A STAND — All WSLC-affiliated unions have been notified about the number of delegates/alternates they can send. If you are interested in representing your union as a delegate or alternate at the WSLC COPE Convention, contact your local union for more information. Check-in and registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. on May 21, the convention convenes at 8:30 a.m. and usually wraps up around 3 or 4 p.m. (but could run longer).
The WSLC is excited to be able to gather in person again for this event. The health and safety of all delegates is the top priority, therefore the WSLC has implemented COVID-19 safety protocols and will require that everyone in attendance wear a mask. A KN95 mask will be provided the day of the COPE Endorsing Convention.
Click here to register online. Please register by May 6. The online registration will serve as each union’s master credential. However, be sure to bring individual credentials mailed to your local with the convention call and signed by a union officer to the COPE Convention on May 21. The registration fee is $125 per delegate. This includes registration, materials, and lunch. You can pay online when you register, or you can mail your check to WSLC, 321 16th Ave South, Seattle, WA, 98144 by Friday, May 13.
The Statewide COPE Committee — consisting of WSLC Officers, members of the WSLC Executive Board, Central Labor Councils, the WSLC Political and Strategic Campaigns Director and a representative of AFSCME, AFT (includes WSNA), IAM, IBEW, IBT, SPEEA and WEA will meet on Friday, May 20 at the Machinist 751 Hall to consider recommendations in these races. Any affiliated organization may observe the Statewide COPE proceedings; however, space is limited and made available on a first-come, first-served basis. This committee’s recommendations will serve as the opening motion in each race at Saturday’s convention as all delegates debate and vote upon candidates and ballot measures to endorse.
If you will need hotel accommodations, a block of rooms has been reserved at the Hilton SeaTac Hotel. You must book your room by April 22 in order to get the event rate of $179 plus tax. Follow this link to reserve a room or call the Hilton’s toll-free reservation number at 1-888-235-4465 and reference the group code/group name: WSLC.
As is customary, the WSLC will be asking for donations to assist with its COPE program. The donation to receive the 2022 COPE button is $20.
Don’t forget that registration must be completed no later than May 6. Your cooperation in pre-registering your union’s delegates makes the process go much smoother on convention day. Please contact Willa Kamakahi at firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any questions.