I’m Steven Pitts, and welcome to Black Work Talk!
Here, you’ll find my writings as well as my podcast from Organizing Upgrade, both of which take a close look at efforts to build the collective power of Black workers. Across the site, we feature conversations with union and worker center leaders, organizers, rank-and-file worker activists, and advocates about their fight against the intertwined evils of racism and capitalism. And we’ll bring fresh visions of a world free of exploitation, and reveal the strategies and tactics that can get us there. Through Black Work Talk, I hope to share my perspective on the struggle to forge what Dr. King (and others) called “the Beloved Community.”
I retired July 1, 2020 from the UC Berkeley Labor Center where I focused on leadership development and Black worker issues. While there, I produced several reports on Black workers and job quality; launched a Black union leadership school; and co-founded the National Black Worker Center – a network of Black worker centers around the country. Prior to coming to the Labor Center, I taught economics for 15 years at the Houston Community College. Before teaching at the community college, I worked in a machine shop in Houston (Hughes Tool Company) for 8 years where I was active in the United Steelworkers of America local trying to build a stronger and more democratic union
Thanks for visiting my website. Be well.