Yesterday, the Coalition of Resort Labor Unions held a press conference to announce their class action lawsuit against the Disneyland Resort and SodexoMagic (a Disneyland Resort tenant), alleging the company is not complying with Anaheim’s “living wage” ordinance.

It received plenty of media coverage – none of which relates much information about the CRLU member unions and their “allies” who helped organized and run the event: UNITE-HERE Local 11, Workers United Local 50, United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 324, IATSE Local 706, Orange County Communities Organized for Responsible Development (OCCORD) and CLUE: Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice.

Activists from union-funded CLUE deployed at funders’ Measure L press conference.

Take CLUE and OCCORD, for example. They’re generally described in media coverage of Anaheim politics as advocacy or community organizing groups, but their nature and close political-financial ties to Anaheim Resort unions are never examined.

CLUE is basically – a left-wing clergy auxiliary that serves to apply a moral patina to union bargaining strategies. CLUE dispatches contingent activists to union “actions,” issues statements signed by progressive clergy in support of union demands, etc.

CLUE is also funded by those same unions. During the past two years alone, CLUE has received nearly $200,000 from CRLU member unions.

UNITE-HERE Local 11 organizer and interim OCCORD executive director Maggie Valenzuela Zuzuarregui

OCCORD was created by UNITE-HERE Local 11 in the early 2000s, and is housed in the office building Local 11 owns in Garden Grove. A hostile work environment allegedly stemming from ousted Executive Director Shakeel Syed spurred a mass exodus of staff in September and October.  UNITE-HERE Local 11 has loaned lead organizer Maggie Valenzuela Zuzuarregui to fill in as interim executive director.

During 2017 and 2018 – the most recent data available – OCCORD received $215,000 from UNITE-HERE and the UFCW.

In other words, the unreported reality is they’re front groups funded by Anaheim Resort unions and deployed to create the appearance of broader community support for union demands.

More in the CRLU’s constituent labor unions coming soon.