By Kenya Spearman, CSO/NSO
In the company of over 273 delegates, 21 guests, 13 executive committee members, Brad Darjean delivered his first NSO President’s message to galvanize NSO brothers and sisters from across the country to take on the mantle of solidarity, promise and hope for NSO and its affiliate organizations.
“The National Staff Organization is in a healthy position,” remarked President Darjean. “We have active committees and a sound budget. This year, we are not seeking an increase in dues.” The budget was smoothly adopted the next day during the business meeting.
“Actives and retired are fortifying us around the country,” Darjean chimed on, “We are positioned well to face challenges head on.” Brad expressed his appreciation of colleagues on the NSO committees that are both active and undergoing changes to strengthen the National Staff Organization.
In soliciting for increased involvement Darjean shared the anticipated changes in Coordinated Bargaining Councils. “The CBC’s are working to face challenges around the country,” he said. He urged participation and attendance at the CBC meeting, where state affiliates will share experiences of facing challenges head on. “Come to the upcoming CBC meeting where success and setbacks can motivate and help direct sister affiliates to move forward,” commented Darjean.
One in four members answered the membership engagement survey. Darjean spurred the affiliates to increase their engagement, “We can do better.” He encouraged members to respond to surveys, to engage in and with NSO, to visit the website, and to share what is being done as it relates to building power. “This work is too important to not participate and to not work collaboratively with each other as we face attacks on organized labor throughout the country. We must believe, promote and defend NSO.” said Darjean.
One of Darjean’s favorite quotes from Martin Luther King, Jr., “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy,” he asserts can guide us as we face challenges together. As the tentative agreement was finally reached between NEASO/AFSE/NSO with management earlier in the week on Wednesday, June 7th, President Darjean asserted, “We stand strong and stand tall together…. Labor, we, strengthened each other in coming together by challenging each other all the while remaining focused on the objective and our core values…. Let it be a fine example of what collective looks like.”