April 2017History

MDC DSA labor activist receives MWC top award

Carl Goldman, a longtime member of Metro DC DSA, was honored at the Saturday, March 25 Evening with Labor as Trade Unionist of the Year. Chris Garlock's account of the event in Union City, the Metropolitan Council AFL-CIO's email newsletter is below. Carl tells us he took the opportunity to speak unkindly of neoliberalism while some elected neoliberal Democrats squirmed at the head table.

[From Union City, March 27]: Solidarity and resistance emphasized at Evening with Labor: "When working people are under attack, what do we do?" asked Carl Goldman. "Stand up, fight back!" thundered back the 900-strong crowd Saturday night at the 40th annual Evening with Labor. The longtime organizer and AFSCME Council 26 Executive Director was named Trade Unionist of the Year to a standing ovation from an enthusiastic crowd clearly pumped up by the collapse of the GOP/Trump attempt to appeal Obamacare and Goldman exhorted them to continue the fight to defend federal workers. "Trump and the Congressional majority and their corporate backers are out to kill us and the rest of the labor movement," Goldman warned. Solidarity and resistance were the watchwords of the night, repeated by speaker after speaker, from Metro Washington Council president Jackie Jeter -- "Our fight is a bigger fight" -- to AFL-CIO Secretary Treasurer Liz Shuler -- "One word: 'unity'" -- as well as political leaders like Maryland U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen and DC Mayor Muriel Bowser. Â The other awardees were: AFSCME 1959 (Organizing); CWA locals 2107, 2018, 2222, 2300 and 2336 (Golden Picket); Herbert Harris and Dyana Forester (COPE DC and Maryland, respectively); Jim Griffin (Community Services) and Jews United for Justice (Community Ally). Check out our photo album of award-winners. - report by Chris Garlock.

[The full citation/bio of Goldman from the Metropolitan Council:] Carl Goldman started his work in the labor movement over 40 years ago as a DC taxi driver attempting to organize his workplace. He's since organized thousands of federal workers, serving since 1989 as the Executive Director of AFSCME Council 26, which had 7 locals when he began and now has 17. A longtime member -- 20 years this year -- of the Executive Board of the Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO, Carl has been an enthusiastic and outspoken supporter of the Council's efforts, urging the participation and active involvement of Council 26's locals and membership.

Other highlights of Carl's career include developing effective internal and external rank-and-file organizing committees: there have been 24 successful organizing drives under his direction, which won Council 26 the Metro Council's organizing award in 1998, 2000 and 2011. He also worked closely with AFSCME Local 658 in an internal organizing drive that won it the organizing award in 2015. Council 26 won the Metro Council's Golden Picket Sign award in 2004 and during the historic 2013 government shutdown, Council 26 helped lead the way in organizing and participating in creative actions to highlight the key role government workers play in our community.

Carl has long supported the Community Services Agency by doing an annual email letter with CSA flyer to all members during the Combined Federal Campaign, providing representation by members on the CSA board, and supporting the Emergency Assistance Fund. In the late 1970's, he worked as the community liaison in Prince George's County for the CSA's prior incarnation, and helped people with unemployment issues and accessing services when they were out on strikes.

A lifelong Washingtonian, Carl has been extremely active in the local community, helping his union and the Metro Council build and strengthen the bonds between labor and community allies.

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