AFL-CIO’s Brennan named to Weinberg panel on ‘toxic culture’

The New Jersey Statehouse. Senator Doherty's bill unfairly impacts skilled tradesmen, the writer argues.

Labor leader Laurel Brennan, secretary-treasurer of the New Jersey State AFL-CIO, has been named to the state ad hoc committee on the “toxic climate in Trenton” by its chair, state Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg.

“I’m honored to be selected by Senator Weinberg,” Brennan said, “and I look forward to working on this much-needed committee. The objectification of women is wrong and hurtful.”

Weinberg announced the formation of the panel after an exposé by New Jersey Advance Media detailed a culture of misogyny in and around the State House.

For nearly two decades, Brennan has led the state AFL-CIO’s annual Women In Leadership Development (WILD) Conference for female labor leaders on the rise within the movement and in related organizations. She sees a clear crossover in her efforts.

“It’s great timing,” she said of her appointment to the Weinberg committee. “The central focus of the 17th Annual WILD Conference this year is ‘Cultural Change Training: Addressing Unwanted Behaviors In Our Movement,’ and we had planned this long before the newspaper report.”

The AFL-CIO, at the national and state levels, works vigorously to ensure all workplaces are free from harassment and discrimination, and has established ethics policies that guarantee worker dignity. Brennan’s work through WILD and elsewhere in the labor movement has advanced these policies.

WILD each year helps women to achieve and be empowered. Hundreds of women within organized labor are WILD graduates and they serve as resource sisters for each other.

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