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Students for a Democratic Society to hold National Convention

Labor leader Sara Nelson featured speaker
By staff |
October 1, 2022
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Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) will be a f
Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) will be a featured speaker at the upcoming SDS convention.

On the weekend of October 15 - 16, hundreds of student activists will convene at Kent State University in Ohio for the annual Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) National Convention. The National Convention is held every fall semester and is an important event for building SDS and the broader student movement. This year’s convention will be joined virtually by Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA). Nelson is also a key figure in the resurgence of militant, class-struggle based trade unionism.

SDS, re-founded in 2006, is the largest and most active progressive student organization in the U.S. Since Roe v. Wade was overturned last June, SDS has been extremely active in the fight to defend reproductive rights. Especially in states like Florida and Texas, where right-wing state governments have and are moving to outlaw abortion, SDS has rallied thousands of students to demonstrate, march and protest. 

It is in the midst of this battle to defend women’s and reproductive rights across the country, as well as a resurging labor movement largely led by women, that SDS will convene its National Convention. The addition of Sara Nelson to the convention’s labor plenary “Labor Strikes Back: Student Solidarity with Organized Labor” represents an important opportunity for student activists to hear from one of the leading figures of a resurging rank-and-file oriented labor movement. In 2019, Sara Nelson led the fight to end Trump's 2019 government shutdown by grounding flights.

SDS has a long tradition of standing with and fighting in solidarity with organized labor, and this year’s convention is sure to continue that tradition. Students will take what they learn from Sara Nelson and other speakers back to their campuses, communities and workplaces to continue to fight for the radical change that needs to happen.

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