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In Minneapolis election results, the work is just beginning

From the Minneapolis Labor Review, November 13, 2021

By Chelsie Glaubitz Gabiou, President,
Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation

For the last 18 months, Minneapolis has been at the epicenter of a national conversation around public safety — a reckoning that’s been decades and centuries in the making. If that wasn’t enough, for 18 months we also have sacrificed so much to a global pandemic — some losing more than others.

All of this debate and trauma evolved into a very “high-stakes” election environment for 2021 in Minneapolis and beyond. Regardless of people’s support or opposition to various ballot initiatives and candidates in Minneapolis, many hoped that the election night results might pave a new path forward. Could these various initiatives and electoral outcomes be an answer for the collective pain we all are feeling?

November 2, the nation watched as we went to the ballot box and voted. While some may draw “line in the sand” conclusions from the results, the reality is that the work is just beginning.

Our task ahead is important and critical. How do we re-imagine an entire public safety network for all workers and their families? How do we embrace the outpouring of energy, exasperation and frustration of workers across Minneapolis?

November 2, the nation watched as Minneapolis went to the ballot box and voted. While some may draw ‘line in the sand’ conclusions from the results, the reality is that the work is just beginning.

As a labor movement, we are experts in organizing. We are experts in raising the voices of those most impacted. We are experts in creating systems that work for all.

We need to be there to turn that desire for change into real organizing across our workplaces and throughout our communities. We especially need to organize within public safety.

We literally do the work of public safety. From first responders, to social workers, to healthcare workers, to educators, to security guards. Our voice and perspective will be critical to the success of a public safety system that works for all.

This election and our collective experience leading up to it are only making us stronger.

Outside forces will continue try to divide us internally. Outside forces will continue to spread misinformation. Outside forces will use our most vulnerable moments for their statewide political gain.

But they can’t stop us. I firmly believe in Minneapolis. Together we will organize and lead not only our own community, but also the entire state and nation to a more just future for all of us.


Chelsie Glaubitz Gabiou was re-elected December 11, 2019 to a second four-year term as president of the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation, AFL-CIO.

Contact MRLF president Chelsie Glaubitz Gabiou at 612-321-5670 or chelsie@minneapolisunions.org.


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