August 5, 2022
Member Spotlight is a new, recurring blog post series intended to highlight and connect the dots between the programs and priorities of the NC State AFL-CIO and the leaders and activist members of our affiliates who make it all possible.
My name is Margaret Summers, and I am a member of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA), living in Raleigh, NC.
Our union has a motto for the retirees: “union passion never retires.” So while I am retired, I’m still involved with NATCA on a national level and with the local union in Raleigh. Having a union job gave me the security and safety to do my job well, but it also gave me a sense of camaraderie with the people I work with. Staying involved lets me give back to our union and to all working people, and I want to do what I can to support the community that has supported me.
One way of doing that is by being active in the NATCA member-to-member political program called “Boots on the Ground”. This is my third election cycle being involved in the program. It’s been a great opportunity for me to help out those in my community who are still working. I get to make sure busy union members have the information they need to be informed voters so we can elect leaders who value our hard work and hold accountable those who don’t have our best interest at heart.
I want people to know that you never stop being a part of the union! It’s important to me that I stay connected to my union because I’m passionate about what I do. My union gave me the opportunity to live a good life, and I want to use my passion to return the favor in retirement. Being part of my union’s political program gives me the chance to make a difference. So whether it’s when we retire or just when we have an hour or two to spare in the evening or over the weekend, we can use the skills we developed as union members to empower our fellow members when they’re struggling to find hope in crazy times and make sure they feel connected to a force for good in this state and country, their union.
If you’re interested in helping to build independent political power for unions of working people in North Carolina, fill out this form or contact Aiden Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org for opportunities near you.