Institute for Policy Studies Employees Form Union with WBNG

June 17, 2021
Robert P. Alvarez
(916) 690-9896

Institute for Policy Studies Employees Form Union

Staff at the Institute for Policy Studies were unanimous in their decision to unionize with the Washington-Baltimore News Guild. Management quickly agreed to voluntary recognition.
Washington D.C. — The staff of the Institute for Policy Studies, the nation’s oldest multi-issue progressive think tank, have unionized.
The union, IPS Workers United, has affiliated with the Washington-Baltimore News Guild, Local 32035 of The News Guild-Communications Workers of America, AFL-CIO.
Newly instated Executive Director Tope Folarin quickly agreed to voluntary recognition, and a neutral arbiter formally certified the union through an authorization card check on June 11.
The bargaining unit, comprised of 17 staffers, was unanimously in favor of unionization.
IPS has a long history of advocating for and working closely with the labor movement, and has seen many of its allies welcome the unionization of their respective staffs. The formation and recognition of the IPS staff union will allow the organization to more fully embody its labor activism.

“As an organization, IPS advocates tirelessly for a more equitable world, including an economic system that values and compensates the workers that sustain it,” said Robert P. Alvarez, a Media Associate at IPS. “By voluntarily recognizing our union, IPS has taken a step toward ensuring that its workplace embodies the policies and character of its ideals. We look forward to contract negotiations.”
“I look forward to building a collaborative relationship with the staff union as we continue to strengthen IPS’s leadership on justice, equity, peace, and the environment,” said Tope Folarin, Executive Director of the Institute for Policy Studies. “We’re proud of our employees for helping to build the labor movement. I believe this is an important development that will equip IPS to better address the many challenges that face us.”

As workplaces scrambled to navigate COVID-19, the importance of formalizing protections for employee input into working conditions became increasingly evident.
“I’m proud to work at an organization so deeply committed to supporting grassroots movements like that of the labor movement,” said Rebekah Entralgo, Managing Editor of “Forming a staff union at IPS ensures that we are putting our ideas into action by living out our progressive values every day. The union looks forward to working with management on creating a more democratic, equitable workplace, and making IPS an even greater place to work.”

Follow the group on Twitter @IPS_Union.