Download the Redefining the United Way & Organized Labor Partnership document that was adopted by the MAUW Board of Directors on April 16, 2009.
Organized labor has fostered a strong tradition of supporting the partnership with United Way in Michigan for more than 60 years.
The United Way of Michigan, now named the Michigan Association of United Ways (MAUW), was founded through the initial efforts of Walter Reuther (President of the UAW), August Scholle (First President of the Michigan State AFL-CIO) and Henry Ford (President of Ford Motor Car Company) in 1947.
In 1951 labor staff was hired to:
- Develop increased labor participation and expand the community services network.
- Develop community service committees within the labor councils
- Educate community service representatives in linking their members to the human services available in their respective communities.
- Assist with establishing local liaison positions in Michigan.
- Encourage organized labor to support the Community Chest and United Fund Campaigns in Michigan.
Organized labor continues to be an integral part of the United Way fundraising efforts in Michigan. Each year organized labor contributes more than 35 million dollars to support the statewide human service delivery system. It is estimated that 33 percent of the blood donated in Michigan is given by union members.
The state labor program responds to special requests for plant closing seminars, unemployment seminars, United Way/Labor speaking engagements, campaign assistance, information and referrals and special projects.