VMOs hit the streets during 2022 Leadership Institute
AFSCME Council 13 members from all eight District Councils gathered in Harrisburg from May 16-19 for the 2022 Leadership Institute, which focused on training Volunteer Member Organizers (VMOs) in recruiting members and growing local union power.
Participants engaged in various training sessions before knocking on the doors of their fellow AFSCME-represented public employees throughout central Pennsylvania. The goal of these house calls was to talk union and encourage those folks to become members, and at the very least to let them know their union sisters and brothers are there for them.
“My main takeaway from the week is that there is a lot of energy and a lot of work to be done. I really learned a lot of information from the New Employee Orientation training that I didn’t know before,” Local 2361 (Bloomsburg University) Executive Board Member Marnie Yeick said about the experience.
This was many participants’ first time taking part in an organizing drive and knocking on people’s doors, and while some were understandably hesitant, everyone came out invigorated by the experience.
“Initially I wasn’t enthused about coming, but now I’m leaving on a positive note,” said Mike McBride, member of Local 2140 (Mifflin County Trades & Labor) who successfully signed up two new AFSCME members during house calls. “Overall, I think it was a very good training.”
To conclude the event, a graduation ceremony took place where Leadership Institute participants received certificates to commemorate this major step in their union activism.
“My main takeaway from here is probably the sense of starting a new era. I’m excited to refresh people’s minds and to instill a little bit more inspiration and hope in my local, because I feel as though our local can absolutely be stronger,” said Vice President and Chief Steward of Local 2622 (Allegheny County Professionals) Shawnna Crago.
Congratulations and thank you to the Council 13 members who traveled from all parts of the commonwealth to take part in this program!
See below for more photos!