October 13, 2016
Coworker.org is a global platform to advance change in the workplace. It makes it easy for individuals or groups of employees to launch, join and win campaigns to improve their jobs and workplaces. It aims to support worker-led campaigns that build community, to spur existing employee networks so they keep growing and develop a sense of shared identity, to develop best practices and technology interventions that transition networks into active collectives, and to draw from and share what it is learning to iterate its work and help strengthen movements for equity and justice.
Thanks to support from Voqal, Coworker.org was able to support its members in a number of ways. It provided technology, advice and support to workers leading campaigns. It also trained and supported nonprofit partners, labor groups and think tanks in tech-enabled organizing. Finally, it made available aggregated, frontline worker data to employee networks, allies, socially responsible investors and journalists.
Thanks to Coworker.org, workers at organizations like Chipotle, WeWork and REI launched successful campaigns to improve their work environments. In fact, within three months REI workers saw wage increases in seven states. In addition, with its partners at Restaurants Opportunity Centers United it was able to support campaigns at national restaurant chains like Darden, Cheesecake Factory and TGIFridays to reinstate auto-gratuities. Finally, it worked with the Partnership for Working Families to test ways to survey on-demand workers and are applying the learnings from this data collection work to a partnership with the National Employment Law Project aimed at enforcing the United States Department of Labor’s new overtime rules.
Coworker.org has also made great strides in bringing workers’ issues to the forefront of the public debate. Through data and content analysis, polling, and finding and supporting individuals who can provide quotes and interviews, it used data and stories to shape media coverage and provide insights on major business stories. The New York Times, Washington Post, BuzzFeed and CNN have all featured its data. Furthermore, Coworker.org co-hosted the first-ever White House Summit on Worker Voice with President Obama, where it sourced over 1,000 questions on the future of workers’ rights.
As a strong proponent of advancing social change, Voqal is proud to support Coworker.org’s efforts at empowering workers to create better, more equitable working environments.