Artfully organizing with Design Action talent

“Our union is proud to represent the workers of Design Action Collective. They are dedicated to the cause of workers’ rights and social justice. And they produce highly creative and effective graphics and websites. Design Action is a quality operation staffed by CWA members who will make sure the Labor Movement’s messages have impact.”

Carl Hall
Executive Officer
Pacific Media Workers Guild TNG-CWA Local 39521 

CWA and Pacific Media Workers Guild staffers, Sara Steffens and Autumn Grace join SF Labor Council Executive Director Tim Paulson at a labor action in San Francisco.  The End the Gridlock Now" posters were designed and printed by Guild union shop Design Action Collective.
CWA and Pacific Media Workers Guild staffers Sara Steffens and Autumn Grace join SF Labor Council Executive Director Tim Paulson at a labor action in San Francisco. The “End the Gridlock Now” posters were designed and printed by Guild union shop Design Action Collective. Photo: Kat Anderson/Freelance Unit 2013.

Union members take pride in the quality that should come with any product stamped with a union label. Carl Hall’s testimonial about Design Action Collective — which created the “End the Gridlock” posters seen here — reflects that tradition.

We plan to do more to promote the goods and services produced by members of the Media Workers Guild. So we invited the folks at our Design Action unit to tell us more about themselves:  

Design Action Collective is a graphic design and web development shop that loves the work you do. We are a Union shop (CWA Local 39521). For over a decade we have been working for the movement for social change, with a particular love for the hard work you do as labor organizers. We understand that fair wages and benefits for working families are not just about asking for a bigger slice of the pie—it’s about justice for those who do the work.

However, holding our ground has been a struggle over the past couple of decades. This is despite the fact that the labor movement proves time and again the ability to deliver a better livelihood to our members and better products and services to the country. A big part of the problem is that the other side spends a lot of money on slick campaigns of lies and deception. They use the worst methods of modern advertising to sell anti-union ideology. Their billions buy them media control, spin doctors, and insidious appeals to people’s worst selves.

We don’t want to play their game. And we don’t need to, to win. They have to spend all that money because they are pushing a boulder uphill. They are trying to convince people to go against their own best interests. The labor movement is empowering people and providing them with what they actually need. We don’t need layers of packaging to make winning look better than it is.

So why do you need Design Action? For the same reason you hire a union electrician to make sure your wiring is done correctly, and a union food service worker to
make sure your food is safe. When it comes to your graphic design needs or your website—the key tools of modern visual communications—it’s important to work with professionals who know the labor movement. Design Action is not a Madison Avenue design studio that occasionally does work for progressive causes. We are a union shop that was founded with a mission to serve you.

Birthed in a union offset print-shop, we know how to design print materials that are striking, print well, and are cost effective. In our web department we have developed two custom packages exclusively for unions: One package is for your hot, escalating campaign with all the tools you need to organize support and get your side of the story out there with the flip of a switch. The second is for your busy union local, that desperately needs an easy-to-navigate, consistently branded, attractive and professional site that they can manage without having to become a computer programmer.

Over the next few pages, you can see some samples of our work, along with the details of our web packages and a list of recent labor and working families organizations we have served. Please feel free to contact us anytime with questions.

In Solidarity,

Design Action
1710 Franklin Street #300
Oakland, CA 94612

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Michael Applegate

Pacific Media Workers Executive Officer