Action Center

ATU Boot Camps


The Battle Has Been Joined

Labor, transit and other advocates emerged from ATU boot camps trained and ready to wage war against proposals to lay off transit workers and cut public transportation in their localities. The summit brought together ATU officers, national and community transit activists from all over the United States who were provided an opportunity to introduce themselves, discuss the challenges they face locally, and begin to shape plans to counter these attacks.

ATU locals around the country shared their own experience of the national transit crisis: describing the service cuts, fare hikes, layoffs, privatization efforts, and concessions plaguing the transit industry and transit labor. All of this is taking place as politicians are introducing and passing legislation in state legislatures that would virtually strip public worker unions of their collective bargaining rights – effectively busting the unions. At the same time, service reductions leave the community stranded and cut off from opportunities, while further polluting our environment and encouraging inequitable development.

The depth of the crisis pointed to the urgency for ATU to develop national solutions that will help us effectively counter the attack on transit and transit labor.  As a result, ATU is partnering with community allies who are working hard to fight back in the face of service reductions, high unemployment, and disinvestment from the urban core. Groups welcomed the opportunity to work more closely with ATU members as they identified shared interest in increasing investment in public transit, improving service, and protecting union jobs in our communities.

The boot camp presented a number of strategies, tools, and resources to help build powerful community based campaigns. Links to presentations are below, along with information on our 62 participating organizations and resources.

We CAN win the fight for better transit, increased funding for public transportation, and workers’ rights.


Boot Camp Presentations

The U.S. Transit Crisis - The Longest Undeclared War in
U.S. History on America's Middle Class and Workers

Bob Muehlenkamp

Good Jobs, Sprawl and Our Need for a “Transit-Industrial Complex”
Greg LeRoy, Executive Director, Good Jobs First

Our Challenge: America’s National Transit Crisis
Larry Hanley, International President, Amalgamated Transit Union

Federal Legislative Update
Jeff Rosenberg, ATU, Director of Government Affairs

Transit and Voters Ballot Initiatives Do’s and Don’ts
Joel Foster, Ballot Initiative Strategy Center

Campaigning for Public Services
Andy McDonald, BerlinRosen

Apollo Alliance/Transportation Manufacturing Action Project
Brian Lombardozzi, T-MAP Coordinator

Meet a Partner: Transit Riders for Public Transportation
TRPT attendees

Organizing Union Members as Transit Riders:
Identifying Pro-Transit Employers/Transit Benefit Users

Greg LeRoy, Good Jobs

Mapping as a Tool for Transit Organizing
Sam Zimbabwe, Reconnecting America and its Center for Transit-Oriented Development

Meet an Ally: America Bikes
Caron Whitaker, Campaign Director


To view other photos, video and boot camp presentations online, please visit the ATU Flickr and Vimeo sites.