Organizing immigrants: meaning generation in the community

Source: Kyoung-Hee Yu, Work, Employment & Society, Published online before print October 21, 2013
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From the abstract:
This article examines the role of community organizations in generating meaning during a campaign to organize Haitian nursing assistants in Boston, USA. There is by now a sizeable literature on labour-community coalition formation, yet it is not understood how repertoires are generated in the community and how they are translated into the realm of employment relations. This study examines how meanings generated in three community organizations, churches, ethnic media and hometown associations were transferred into the organizing process. Findings indicate that collective identities and political selves constructed through experiences in the community can help low-wage immigrant workers overcome the sense of powerlessness that they often experience at work. Contributions to scholarship on community unionism and mobilization theory are discussed.