WASHINGTON — Major Chicago unions will sign a “Labor Peace Agreement” on Tuesday at McCormick Place, promising not to strike during the Democratic National Convention next year in Chicago.
On April 11, the Democratic National Committee announced that Chicago will host the convention at the United Center on Aug. 19-22, 2024, with other events at the McCormick Place complex. The master contract giving Chicago the convention over New York and Atlanta did not include the labor deal — because negotiations could not take place until the winning city was announced.
DNC Chair Jaime Harrison, in Chicago on Monday to attend a fundraiser headlined by Vice President Kamala Harris, will be at the signing ceremony with Gov. J.B. Pritzker, Mayor Brandon Johnson and Chicago Federation of Labor President Bob Reiter, Other union leaders and stakeholders are also expected.
“This agreement is more expansive than in years past and comes earlier in the process than ever before,” Harrison said in a statement.
“This agreement is part of the traditional process that occurs every four years and codifies the convention’s commitment to utilizing union labor everywhere applicable and when available,” an official said in a statement.
President Joe Biden’s administration is very labor friendly — and Chicago is a union city whose leaders pushed for the convention — so that finalizing the labor agreement was not in doubt.
The pact covers the United Center, where Biden and Harris will be nominated for a second term, and the McCormick Place complex. What is new is that for the first time the no-strike deal will also apply to the workers at the official convention hotels — all unionized.
The deal is between the DNC’s convention committee, the Chicago Host Committee, the Chicago Federation of Labor and these unions: the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees; IBEW Local 134; IUOE Local 399; Mid-America Carpenters Regional Council; Riggers, Machinery Movers & Machinery Erectors Local Union 136; SEIU Local 1; Teamsters Local 727; UNITE HERE Local 1; and United Steelworkers Local 17U Decorators Union.
In a statement, Reiter said: “We didn’t just get a strong, comprehensive Labor Peace Agreement done for the upcoming Democratic National Convention, we got it done earlier than any convention in recent memory.”