Worker Justice

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Inspiring Lessons Learned from the Madison-Milwaukee Worker Cooperative Meetup

Two weekends ago, Francisco, one of the co-developers of Shaky Hands Madison, an up-and coming-screenprinting shop, attended the meetup between Madison and Milwaukee worker cooperatives, organized by MadWorC

The day consisted of a tour of local cooperatives: Isthmus Engineering, Milestone Democratic School, Community Pharmacy, and Union Cab Cooperative, and ended with a social hour. Members of Shaky Hands Milwaukee were also present, and were able to connect with Francisco, members of Shared Capital Cooperative, and other cooperative allies. Worker Justice Wisconsin was also present and provided interpretation throughout the tour. 

We were left in awe of the scale of the existing cooperatives and their resilience – most of the cooperatives we toured had been in operation for over 40 years. We were also inspired by the many forms of fundraising that each cooperative used beyond traditional bank loans, such as community-owned bonds, accessibility grants through the City of Madison, and personal investment. We will apply what we learned during this event to our co-op incubation program!

To find out more about our worker cooperative incubation program and get involved, contact our Cooperative Organizer Frida Ballard at frida@workerjustice.org or 608-347-1423.