Luis Primo (UNT) Speaks at UC Berkeley

Luis Primo of the Venezuelan National Union of Workers (UNT) spoke to a packed room of Berkeley students on the history of the UNT, with a focus on the process of "cogestion obrero" (workers' control / co-management).

On Wednesday, March 22, Venezuelan trade unionist Luis Primo paid a visit to the University of California, Berkeley, a campus made famous in the 1960s as the nerve center of the anti-Vietnam War student movement. In an event co-organized by the Center for Latin American Studies, the Andean Project, the Venezuelan Working Group of Berkeley, and HOV, Primo spoke to a packed classroom room of around 60 students, faculty, workers, and other members of the Berkeley community. After his introduction, Primo engaged the audience in a broad-ranging discussion.

He outlined the history of the CTV and the rise of the UNT, with a focus on the question of workers' co-management.  Primo explained the wide variety of economic models that are being developed in Venezuela, from the rapidly expanding cooperative movement, to workers' co-management with the state, to the advanced model of workers' control being developed by the workers of ALCASA.  He explained how the UNT is working to develop social-political trade unionism, a new kind of trade unionism that organizes and incorporates broad layers of society, not just full-time workers, including part-time workers, workers in the informal sector, students, housewives, indigenous peoples' movements, and other social movements throughout society.

He also explained the beginnings of a new model for social production and development that connects economic centers such as a basic-industry factory with the community and the region around it. His emphasis on the need for democracy and debate within the labor movement and throughout society was also well-received.  His message that the best way to build solidarity with Venezuela and Latin America as a whole is to struggle for revolutionary change right here in the "belly of the beast" was enthusastically applauded. 

Thanks to all those that attended and helped organize this excellent event.

luis primo berkely

3335 Dwinelle Hall at UC Berkeley Was Packed by Students, Faculty, Workers , and Members of the Community

luis primo berkeley

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