Documentary Examines Democratic Workplaces

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Posted: 
Friday, April 11, 2014 - 5:22pm

Three individuals with experience in cooperative economy will discuss the documentary, Shift Change: Putting Democracy to Work, on April 19 in the Lenna Theatre on JCC’s Jamestown Campus.

The film screening begins at 1 p.m., followed by a panel discussion. Both events, free and open to the public, are sponsored by JCC’s college program committee with support from the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation. Lenna Theatre is located in Hultquist Library. Refreshments will be served. 

Shift Change, produced by Mark Dworkin and Melissa Young, examines stories of employee-owned businesses that compete successfully in today’s economy while providing secure, dignified jobs in democratic workplaces.

There is growing interest in firms that are owned and managed by their workers, according to Bullfrog Films, which publishes independently produced films, such as Shift Change, about environmental and related social justice issues.

The panelists include Tori Kruper, Clinton Parker, and Joe Marriffino.

Kuper is one of founding members of the worker cooperative BreadHive in Buffalo. Armed with a strong work ethic, unique recipes, and hearty grains, this new bakery is becoming a success story of Buffalo’s vibrant food scene. Kuper will share stories from her experience of building the business from the ground up.

Parker, who also lives in Buffalo, will share his experience being a part of the Nickel City Housing Cooperative. Housing cooperatives are an innovative way to provide secure housing options for a variety of residents.

Marriffino, who works at the Greenstar Cooperative in Ithaca, has an extensive background in and understanding of worker cooperatives on a national level. He will share his insights from being involved with cooperatives for the last 10 years.