New film tells the stories of employee-owned cooperative businesses that compete successfully in today’s economy while providing secure, dignified jobs in democratic workplaces.
Where: Barrymore Theatre, 2090 Atwood Ave., Madison.
When: November 15, 2012.
Social hour at 6:00 PM, showtime 7:00 PM.
Panel discussion and Q&A following movie
Tickets: $8.00 day of show, $7.00 in advance (barrymorelive.com or 608-241-8633)
With the long decline in well-paid jobs and today’s economic crisis, millions have been thrown out of work, and many are losing their homes. The usual economic solutions are not working, and growing numbers around the world are ready to employ a different business model to help re-invent our failing economy, generate long-term community resilience and stability, and create a more egalitarian and democratic way of life.
SHIFT CHANGE visits the more than 50 year old network of cooperative businesses in Mondragon, Spain, and thriving examples of such businesses in the U.S. SHIFT CHANGE shares on-the-ground experience, lessons, and observations from the worker-owners on the front line of the new economy. Come witness and celebrate together the ingenuity and creativity of worker-owners who are “building the road as we travel” towards a more democratic, just, stable, and sustainable economy.
SHIFT CHANGE filmmakers Melissa Young and Mark Dworkin gained unprecedented access to the world’s oldest and largest network of worker Cooperatives in Mondragon—in the Basque Country of Spain, where 60% of local residents are employee-owners. With high job security and competitive salaries, the Basque Country boasts half the unemployment rate of the rest of Spain, and the Mondragon Corporation is the country’s 10th largest. SHIFT CHANGE explores many of Mondragon’s diverse production facilities; along with its network of cooperative infrastructure, education, and social services agencies, highlighting the qualities that have helped to drive Mondragon’s business success while also perpetuating the democratic, socially responsible, community-oriented principles upon which it was founded.
Here in the U.S.—where a long decline in manufacturing and a brutal economic crisis have led to millions of Americans being thrown out of work—many are looking to Mondragon as a model. Worker-owned, cooperative businesses are on the rise, with hundreds of co-ops in the U.S. today, representing thousands of individual worker/owners. SHIFT CHANGE highlights some of the vibrant worker-owned cooperatives across the nation: from bakeries to solar energy to manufacturing and engineering. Through in-depth interviews with worker-owners, attendance at co-op meetings, and visits to the factory floor, the film conveys the promise that these businesses offer to reinvent our failing economy, provide a pathway to long term stability, and nurture a more egalitarian way of life.
Businesses featured in SHIFT CHANGE include Madison’s Isthmus Engineering, Community Pharmacy, Nature’s Bakery and Union Cab. Among other U.S. cooperatives the film also features
the 7:00 PM. Screening, please stay and participate in a panel discussion and Q&A with prominent local economic activists.
The event is presented by Madison Worker Cooperatives (MadWorC), and co-sponsored by W.O.R.T, the UW Center for Cooperatives and the UW Havens Center.
Tickets are available in advance at http://barrymorelive.com for $7.00 plus $1.00 service fee or on the day of the show for $8.00.
ABOUT THE PRODUCERS: Melissa Young and Mark Dworkin have produced many documentary films on social justice and environmental issues in North and South America, winning prestigious awards from CINE, Houston, Columbus, Prix Leonardo, International Wildlife, Women in Film/ Seattle, Chicago, NW Film and Video Festivals, among others. Their productions are known for diverse examples of regular people helping create positive change. Young and Dworkin’s films are in broad circulation in academic and activist settings. Five have been broadcast on PBS, most recently, Good Food , an intimate look at the growers and businesses that are creating a local, sustainable food system in the Pacific Northwest. Their latest release, We Are Not Ghosts (2012) is about rebuilding Detroit from the ground up.