LUEL 1st National Congress Calls on Our Past and Paves the Way for Our Future

Originally published in Labor Today

The Labor United Educational League (LUEL) 1st National Congress on Sunday, April 7th, 2024, charted the course that the organization will be taking in the next years before the next congress and how they will accomplish their goals.

Taking direct inspiration from the Trade Union Educational League (TUEL) and William Z. Foster, LUEL views the amalgamation of craft unions into industrial unions as a primary long-term goal for the working class. LUEL’s guiding motto has consistently been “Class-Oriented Trade Unionism”. This means educating workers beyond mere trade unionism, rejecting business unionism, and heightening working-class consciousness to the point of turning a defensive fight against the bosses to an active struggle against capital.

LUEL proudly continues the TUEL heritage and aligns with the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) on its principle of anti-imperialism.

For decades, the labor movement had been weakened due to the McCarthyite era which affected the C.I.O. and its merger into the AFL-CIO. The new labor federation became an appendage of the US State Department and expelled its left-wing, including communists, from their unions.

At the Congress, they reaffirmed their position supporting and expanding democratic freedoms within the trade union movement. They also reaffirmed their call for the reunification of the world trade union movement with the WFTU. The organization reiterated their demand for the dissolution of the US State Department-dominated International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), and exposing its involvement in the AFL-CIO’s “Solidarity” Center.

Besides working within the unions to build worker class-consciousness, a major task for LUEL is the building of a labor party in the United States. Only a labor party that truly represents the working class is not beholden to the Republicans or Democrats, both controlled by the bosses of monopoly capital. With the working class falling further and further into destitution and unions being attacked daily, it is necessary for the sharpening of the working class into a fighting force against the bosses. This can only be accomplished through class-oriented trade unionism.