News and Updates

SWJC in the News

Our Updates

SWJC Wins!

  • We successfully advocated for the City of Durham to include repeal of NC General Statute 95-98, the state’s ban on public sector collective bargaining, in their official legislative priorities.
  • NC House Bill 243/Senate Bill 561 (“An Act Repealing The Ban On Public Employee Collective Bargaining”) – We organized meetings of public sector workers with over 40 state legislators to discuss and advocate for this bill, which if passed will repeal NC General Statute 95-98. The bill has passed its first reading in both chambers and is currently in committee.
  • NC House Bill 470 (“An Act Authorizing the Cities of Greensboro and Winston-Salem to Establish a Civil Service Board”) – We partnered with the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) to persuade Representatives Jeff Zengler, Jon Hardister, and Kyle Hall to introduce this bill, which if passed will provide civil service protections to municipal workers in Greensboro and Winston-Salem by establishing Civil Service Boards to review disciplinary actions and firings and ensure workplace justice. Establishing Boards in these two major cities will set a precedent for the rest of the state. Our members testified in front of the House Rules Committee, and as a result, House Bill 470 was adopted by the State House. The bill is currently under discussion in the State Senate, and we are continuing to work with the IAFF to persuade key lawmakers to support it.
  • We organized a Political Action Day on April 19, 2023, at which 17 public service workers received political education and met with 21 State Legislators to discuss issues of concern to them, including raising public sector workers’ wages, improving their working conditions, and advocating for repeal of NC General Statute 95-98, the state’s ban on public sector collective bargaining.
  • We initiated a new coalition with over 125 labor, community, and faith organizations in NC to establish the NC People’s Power Coalition, which develops deep organizing strategies to build workers’ power, challenges attacks from the far right supermajority in the State Legislature, and advances our demands for workers’ rights. We led the Coalition in holding two Days of Outrage at the State Legislature, at which we presented a slate of labor demands, with emphasis on repealing NC General Statute 95-98, the state’s ban on public sector collective bargaining. (Learn more at
  • We successfully advocated for wage increases for municipal workers in four major cities: Charlotte, Raleigh, Durham and Greensboro. We won a $22 per hour minimum wage for city workers in Charlotte and $18 per hour minimum for city workers in Raleigh and Durham, and Greensboro.
  • We successfully organized housekeepers and graduate student workers at UNC Chapel Hill, NC State University, and other state university campuses. Our members held press conferences and rallies demanding that the UNC Chapel Hill Board of Trustees and the UNC System Board of Governors support the repeal of NC General Statute 95-98. As a result of our activism, the UNC Student Body Government passed a resolution in support of repealing NC General Statute 95-98, and wages have risen over $1.50 in the last year and a half.


  • INCREASED WAGES – We won $32 million in wage increases in the City of Virginia Beach annual budget in FY2023 including raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour and recognizing years of service in a Step Pay Plan, a first for the city.
    EXPANDED RIGHTS – We have organized to gain a majority support of blue collar essential city workers in four cities including Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Newport News and Portsmouth. In VB, two of our members were selected to participate in the Task Force on Collective Bargaining that has now made recommendations to city council, with an expected passage date of May 2024. In Portsmouth, we worked with the firefighters union to pass a resolution in support of Collective Bargaining in December 2023.
  • TRAINED OVER 100 BLACK WORKER LEADERS – We have a developed a strong layer of over 100 Black worker leaders in all four cities, including training them on public speaking, capacity and organizational building, public budget processes and more. This has resulted in over 20 Black workers speaking publicly at city council meetings and press conferences.