Worker Centers: Organizing Communities at the Edge of the Dream
Publication Date: December 2005
Publisher(s): Economic Policy Institute
Author(s): Janice Fine
The Neighborhood Funders Group (NFG), in partnership with the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), commissioned a study of worker centers. Most of the centers studied are working with a predominantly immigrant population and were identified by key informants as among the most advanced and promising models.
The goals of the research were to identify various worker center models; evaluate their effectiveness in improving the lives of workers; and highlight their current strengths, weaknesses, challenges, and potential. The study is largely qualitative, although a survey of 40 organizations was conducted and the quantitative data from this sample is analyzed and presented along with nine case studies.
The study will culminate with the publication by EPI and Cornell University Press of a book reporting the study's findings. This EPI briefing paper summarizes the major findings from that book and presents an overview of the worker center phenomenon.