Learn Blog

2018-19 Labor-Community Film Series

LEARN (Labor Education Action Research Network) is pleased to announce its 2018-2019 Labor-Community Film Series.

You are invited to join friends from the New Jersey labor movement, Rutgers, and the broader community on the first Thursday of each month during the fall and spring semester for a series of film screenings and lively discussions on some of the most pressing issues facing workers and New Jersey residents.

From low-wage work to racial justice, gender equity, and climate change, the LEARN film series will investigate some of the most pressing issues of our time.

The Fight of Her Life: Meet the MMA Star Who’s Trying to Unionize the Sport

Many of the MMA fighters you see on national television are living below the poverty line.

Mixed Martial Artists receive a smaller share of revenue than athletes in other major sports. They are paid as independent contractors, denying them even the most basic workplace protections. And unlike most professional athletes in America, they are not represented by a union.

Now, one fighter is trying to change all that.

The Battle for Paradise

Naomi Klein's new book, The Battle for Paradise: Puerto Rico Takes on the Disaster Capitalists (Haymarket Books, 2018), is a compelling read and a fascinating story. It is also short! Everyone who cares about creating a just society based on mutual respect, real democracy and true equality of opportunity should read it without delay. 

Prosperity and Justice

As its chair, Tom Kibasi, director of IPPR, noted in his introduction to the report, the “members of the Commission come from all walks of life [including business, labor, local government, civil society and the church] and different political viewpoints.” Given the range of opinion, the group reached “a remarkable degree of agreement,” which its members hoped might be “reflected in a wider national consensus about a new direction for the UK economy” (vii).

A Call for Collaboration

What is Our Best New Jersey? It is a place and a process where the people of New Jersey—or at least an open, representative cross-section of it—can discuss what we like most about the state and how we think it might be changed for the better.

Over the next few months, faculty and students in the Rutgers department of Labor Studies and Employment Relations, as well as members and guests of Rutgers LEARN—the Labor Education and Research Network—are invited to explore these questions here.