Members of the Industrial Workers of the World’s Socialist Rifle Association Workers United are experiencing increased productivity and better working conditions less than a year after forming their union.
Since workers at the Socialist Rifle Association organized as the Socialist Rifle Association Workers United with the IWW, they are seeing positive results from a union contract — also known as a “Collective Bargaining Agreement” — that has provided them with more rights and better representation.
“We’re guaranteed a seat at the table within the assembly to give our side of the issue, and that’s definitely a win for us,” says Lucas Hubbard, the Socialist Rifle Association’s communications director. “Without a union, we don’t get that right.”
Before the union’s inception, workers did not have any representation at management’s meetings — even when it was concerning their own jobs, according to Hubbard. After forming the union, however, workers saw an increase in their rights, from having representation at meetings with management to improved job security.
“More than anything, the SRAWU has provided a sense of stability in our work,” says Sybil S, executive deputy of the Socialist Rifle Association. “The political nature of the organization means things can be volatile, and it’s nice to know that even if tensions are running high, we won’t need to worry about covering our backs.”
Since forming SRAWU in 2021, workers have been more able to focus on what needs to be done because of ensured employment stability, according to Sybil. And that is what inspired Socialist Rifle Association workers to organize their union in the first place.
“The primary thing I’ve noticed is we’ve been better about coordinating goals and strategies,” says Sybil.
Better protocol has also improved day-to-day working conditions, according to Hubbard.
The Socialist Rifle Association and SRAWU are now aligned in their goals, according to Sybil: welcoming new members, providing useful programs to the membership and aiding communities in need.
“All while taking care of both the paid and volunteer staff that make those things possible,” she adds.
“Now that we have union reps and the ability to self-advocate a lot better, it’s definitely a more secure feeling,” says Hubbard. “Our second CBA is on the horizon. It’s time for us to start thinking about that.”