Worker Power Update
Wells Fargo Workers Organizing with CWA Urge Lawmakers to Hold Banks Accountable
Juan Sanchez, a Committee for Better Banks member from Wells Fargo, with Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) after she demanded at a hearing that Wells Fargo remain neutral in workers' organizing efforts.
Last week, Wells Fargo workers from the Wells Fargo Organizing Committee traveled to Washington, D.C., to meet with lawmakers ahead of the U.S. House Financial Services and U.S. Senate Banking Committees’ hearings on holding megabanks accountable. The workers, who are organizing as Wells Fargo United, a campaign with the Committee for Better Banks-CWA, urged lawmakers to demand that Wells Fargo respect workers’ rights to organize by refraining from union busting and change its toxic internal work cultures that harm workers and consumers. Despite being repeatedly asked by multiple lawmakers, including Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Rep. Cindy Axne (D-Iowa), Wells Fargo CEO Charles Scharf, who was one of the bank CEOs who appeared before the Committees, would not commit to not interfering in the workers’ efforts to organize a union. "If there had been a union at Wells Fargo, then perhaps the toxic policies and behaviors driving these scandals would not have gone unchecked for so long,” said Rep. Pressley during the hearing. In a statement following the hearing, the Wells Fargo Organizing Committee said, “Mr. Scharf’s refusal once again to commit to not interfering with our effort to organize a union by remaining neutral shows not much has changed at Wells Fargo since its fake account scandal in 2016, and that’s exactly why we’re fighting for a union and voice on the job. Mr. Scharf can commit to ‘follow the law,’ but until he commits to supporting Wells Fargo’s essential workforce by respecting our right to organize a union, he cannot and will not fix the bank’s toxic culture.”
IUE-CWA Members Building Political Power
The Indiana AFL-CIO hosted a labor walk for IUE-CWA Local 84913 member Justin Sparazynski, who is running for Penn Township Board Member in St. Joseph County, Ind. Sparazynski is a long time activist with IUE-CWA’s political program, an Iraq and Afghanistan War veteran, participant in the CWA Veterans for Social Change program, and if elected, would be the only union member on the board.
In Louisville, Ky., IUE-CWA Local 83761 Political Action team members ran a Political Action Fund drive at their local and collected over 430 cards and raised over $67,000 in new annual contributions.