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Season 4, Episode 69

IATSE’s fight to organize with Atlanta Opera



Guest Name:

Adam Keller

Guest Website:


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Adam Keller, Co-host of The Valley Labor Report and member of IATSE Local 900 joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the ongoing struggle between the Atlanta Opera and IATSE Local 798 members. 

After losing their jobs as independent contractors with the Atlanta Opera during the pandemic, the make-up artists and hair stylists decided it was time to organize. After voting to organize and two years of anti-union activity by the Atlanta Opera, a recent NLRB hearing uncovered the sealed votes and agreed the vote was to be upheld and recognized. The Atlanta Opera is willing to negotiate, but after two years of anti-union behavior, Keller is wary that they will not negotiate in good faith.

After three years of production, The Valley Labor Report has begun expanding to become a complete labor news source in the South. Among these efforts is a new weekly show, Shop Talk. Keller hosts Shop Talk, and the show provides information on historical events, educational information and more to educate listeners on the labor movement and historical events that happened along the way.

The Shop Talk will cover historical events along with educational stories. One event covered on Shop Talk is The Walker County, Ala. educator strike of 1979. The strike was the first teacher strike in Alabama history. At a time when educator strikes were common across the country, the 600 educators in Walker County were joined by the 150 members of the school support staff to strike against not only the superintendent but the bank providing funding and Alabama’s governor as well. After one month, the strike was concluded and a new agreement was made, and the educators and support staff returned to work.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more.



America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Auto Workers, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.


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