Don Slaiman

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Don Slaiman

Don Slaiman is a US labor activist. Currently Chairman at Frantia LLC Scottsdale, Arizona.

Ending "Right to Work"

On Saturday January 16 2021, the Virginia Our Revolution organization sponsored an online kickoff meeting featuring progressive Democratic Party members of the General Assembly (Virginia’s state legislature) and labor leaders to get behind a Bill, House Bill 1755, in the House of Delegates, the lower house of the General Assembly. This bill would repeal Virginia’s longstanding “Right to Work” statute, which is seen by organized labor as a major obstacle to unionization in Virginia.

Last year, there was also an attempt to repeal “Right to Work” in Virginia, but it was blocked in the legislature by a combination of Republicans and conservative Democrats, the latter including Governor Ralph Northam. The argument for opposing the repeal was, as always, that abolishing right to work would cause companies to not to want to come to Virginia, and thus would “cost jobs.”

At the Saturday meeting, the chief sponsor of House Bill 1755, Delegate (state representative) Lee J. Carter , an openly declared socialist from Northern Virginia, provided an interesting history of “Right to Work” in the United States.

Two other Democratic co-sponsors of HB 1755 also spoke at the kickoff meeting. Delegate Joshua Cole, who represents the area of Fredericksburg and Stafford County in Northern Virginia, pointing out the relevance of the effort to repeal Right to Work to the upcoming Martin Luther King day holiday, stated that the “Black-white economic divide [in the United States] is as great as it was in 1968,” when King was murdered while supporting African-American sanitation workers in Memphis, Tennessee. Cole and other speakers explained that anti-labor measures are also anti-minority measures. Delegate Sally Hudson, who represents the city of Charlottesville and environs, also emphasized the racist roots of “Right to Work.”

Labor spoke out powerfully at the kickoff meeting. Joshua Armstead, Vice President of Unite-Here Local 23, which represents workers in Washington DC and Northern Virginia, Don Slaiman from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, and Virginia Diamond, President of the AFL-CIO of Northern Virginia, all pledged their support to the bill. Speakers also included Larry Cohen, Chairman of Our Revolution, Sandra Klassen, Chair of Our Revolution-Northern Virginia, and Michelle Woolley, chair of the Coalition to Repeal Right to Work.

This year there are state elections in Virginia for governor, lieutenant governor, and all 100 seats in the House of Delegates. By Virginia law, Governor Northam cannot run for re-election and the issue of right to work is sure to be an issue in the campaign.

Meanwhile, supporters of repeal are circulating a petition to help drum up public support for HB 1755. [1]

Union comrades

Virginia Diamond August 31 2019·


With Brian Wivell, Don Slaiman and Jason Ascher at ATU Local 689.

Moscow time

In the mid 1990s Don Slaiman, was Director of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions Moscow Office[2].

Supporting the Wheeling-Pittsburgh Strikers

In the June 14, 1997 edition of People's Weekly World Don Slaiman, National Field Staff AFL-CIO, was listed among those who sent their support to the 4500 members of the United Steelworkers of America who have been on strike against the Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation since October 1, 1996:[3]

Influencing the vote

In May 1998 Don Slaiman, international AFL-CIO field representative for Ohio, spoke to the Democratic Socialists of Central Ohio general meeting inabout unions and living wage campaigns. A long-time organizer, Slaiman had worked with trade unions in Russia and Romania as well as in the United States. He first started working in Ohio in 1996 with the AFL-CIO's "America Needs a Raise" campaign, directing one of the first town meetings held at that time[4].

Slaiman told us that current union activity is focusing on mobilizing members to vote. Unions are educating members on various issues, rather than telling them who to vote for, hoping for a big turnout in the November elections. At stake is control of the five-member apportionment board that draws political district lines in Ohio. The board consists of the governor, state auditor, secretary of state, the House speaker and the Senate president. Whichever party controls this board can usually draw the lines so that their party wins most of the elections.

Backing the PWW

In January 1998 fourteen Ohio labor leaders, headed by Dick Acton, vice president of the Ohio AFL-CIO, sent a letter to their contemporaries urging their financial support of the Communist Party USA's People's Weekly World. The letter, which was sent to 50 labor leaders in the Cleveland area of Northeast Ohio said the World "tells our story and unhesitatingly takes our side. It was there when we needed it and now it needs is."

Employee Free Choice Act work

In April 2009 Don Slaiman, was working on the Employee Free Choice Act campaign in critical state of Colorado[5].


Senior Field Rep, AFL-CIO, Oct 1995 – Present.

Fratia LLC

Fratia LLC, Chairman, Fratia LLC, Feb 2013 – Present , Scottsdale, Arizona.

Electioneering, Politics, Entertainment, Foreign Affairs, Mobilizing, and Marketing.[6]