AFL-CIO Creates Retiree Organization For All American Workers

May 5, 2000 ( - In a move to consolidate the power of an aging workforce, the AFL-CIO this week announced the formation of a new national organization for retired workers. For plan sponsors, this might mean they have another, potentially powerful, interest group to keep in mind.

Open to All

Membership will be open to AFL-CIO members and non-members starting January 1, 2001, “the start of the real millennium,” stated Larry Gold, AFL-CIO in-house counsel.  The organization will be called the Alliance For Retired Americans.

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“The goal,” Gold continued, “is to give retired members and non-members an organization that will give them legislative, advocacy, and political clout on issues of direct concern. We hope to work with them productively.”

An October 14, 1999 AFL-CIO resolution called for action to “identify, educate, organize, and mobilize older and retired workers and create structures and programs that promise their lasting participation.”

Clinging On

At the union alone, four to five million members are expected to retire over the next seven years. This is seen as a way to keep them involved in the labor movement.  Opening the organization to non-union retirees will help consolidate the organization’s strength and the union’s influence

Membership restrictions, benefits, and costs have not yet been determined.

An existing affiliated organization for older and retired workers, the National Council of Senior Citizens (NCSC), is expected to dissolve in favor of the Alliance For Retirement Americans.  NCSC executive board members will run the Alliance.