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Coalition of Labor Union Women Records

Identifier: LR000664

Scope and Content

Part I: The papers that comprise the collection include correspondence, minutes, legal and financial documents, resolutions, proceedings, speeches, subjects files, and printed material relating to the administration and activities of CLUW. The material documents the organization's efforts to educate, support, and encourage women, and to highlight issues and problems concerning women in the workplace, particularly, pay equity, sex discrimination, child care and family issues, affirmative action, occupational health and safety, and labor relations, as well as other issues such as reproductive freedom, education, and domestic violence. Also included is material pertaining to the founding of CLUW and the first constitutional convention, the national office, governing boards and committees, chapters throughout the United States, the Center for Education and Research, conventions, conferences, seminars, publications, and the CLUW News.

The collection covers the terms of Olga Madar and Joyce Miller as president, and the election of Gloria Johnson in 1994.

Among the important correspondents are: Bella Abzug Olga Madar Shirley Chisolm George Meany Diane Curry Barbara Mikulski Karen DeCrow Joyce Miller Douglas Fraser Eleanor Holmes Norton Erma Henderson Laurence Rockefeller Delores Huerta Gloria Steinem Mildred Jeffrey George S. Wills Gloria Johnson Myra Wolfgang Edward Kennedy Leonard Woodcock Coretta Scott King Addie Wyatt

Important subjects covered in this collection are: Affirmative action programs—Law and legislation—United States Child Care CLUW founding and political involvement Equal rights amendments Equal pay for equal work Industrial hygiene Industrial safety International Women's Year, 1975 Sex discrimination against women—United States Women—International cooperation Women—Legal status, laws, etc.—United States Women—Societies and clubs—United States Women employees—United States Women in trade-unions—United States Women's rights—United States Working class families—United States

Series Description: Series I, Founding, 1974-1975: Correspondence, clippings, and other materials related to the 1974 CLUW Founding Conference. Some files relate to Steering Committee and regional conference calls.

Series II, Conventions, 1975 and 1977: Correspondence, clippings, delegate lists, and material relating to the Constitutional conventions of 1975 and 1977.

Series III, Office Files, 1974-1979: Correspondence, clippings and other materials related to union office activities and those of the President and National Secretary.

Series IV, Women's Topics, 1974-1979: Material relating to conditions affecting unionized women in the work place and to women's issues.
Part II: Series Description: Series V, National Office, 1973-1994: Correspondence, financial and legal documents, personnel information and reports relating to the administrative activities of the national office. Also includes correspondence to and from officers, and letters relating to CLUW's social concerns such as child care and the Equal Rights Amendment; speeches and testimony given by members; material relating to the CLUW Child Care Seminar, National Committee on Pay Equity, American Family Conference, and other conferences and seminars sponsored by CLUW, and CLUW publications.

Series VI, Conventions, 1973-1993: Materials relating to conventions and conferences, including planning materials, committee and convention reports, chapter material, constitutions, and souvenir journals.

Series VII, Boards and Committees, 1974-1988: Correspondence, minutes, agendas, resolutions, lists, and other materials relating to the activities of the National Coordinating Committee, National Steering Committee, National Officers' Council, National Executive Board, and other Committees and Task Forces.

Series VIII, CLUW Chapters, 1974-1988: Correspondence, chapter activities reports, by-laws and other materials received by and sent to regional, state and local chapters.

Series IX, Center for Education and Research, 1975-1987: Correspondence, personnel information, legal and financial documents, fact sheets, and other printed material relating to the administration and activities of the Center for Education and Research, particularly its fundraising efforts. Also included are materials relating to CER projects such as the Empowerment of Union Women, Health and Safety, Working Women's Awareness Week, and the Working Women's Collective Bargaining Clearinghouse and Monitoring Project.

Series X, CLUW News, 1974-1988: Correspondence and other items relating to the administrative activities of Diane Curry, editor of the CLUW NEWS.

Series XI, Subject Files, 1974-1988: Material relating to subjects such as Reproductive Freedom, Child Care, Pay Equity, Pregnancy Discrimination, Equal Rights Amendment, Unemployment, and Women in Unions

Series XII, About CLUW, 1974-1991: Includes copies of the CLUW NEWS, (volumes 1-14), newspaper clippings, radio and television clips, and memorabilia.
Part III: Part 3 of the Coalition of Labor Union Women Collection (CLUW) is comprised of materials relating to the administration and activities of CLUW, particularly correspondence, minutes of the National Executive Board (NEB) and National Officers' Council (NOC) meetings, biennial conventions, conferences, state chapter files, and subject files. The state chapter files document the creation of many local chapters, as well as the election of State Vice Presidents and Alternate State Vice Presidents (predominantly in the 1990s), and chapter reporting. Important issues highlighted include reproductive rights, pay equality, health care, discrimination, domestic violence, sexual harassment, AIDS, and union relations. Also included are the organization and promotion of programs, such as Working Women's Awareness Week, Come Shop With Me, Take Our Daughters to Work Day, and National Vote Day.


  • 1972 - 2001
  • Majority of material found within 1974 - 2001


Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.


In 1974, the Coalition of Labor Union Women was founded in Chicago with the goal of bringing women to the forefront of the workforce as full and equal participants. The Coalition's four main objectives are as follows: organizing unorganized women within the labor force by encouraging unions to be more aggressive in their efforts to bring women under collective bargaining agreements; to encourage women, through their unions, to recognize and take positive action against job discrimination in hiring, promotion and classification; to lead women to become more active participants in the political and legislative process through the labor union particularly on affirmative action issues; and to persuade women to assume leadership roles and participate at the policy-making levels of their unions.


88 Linear Feet (86 MB, 45 SB)


The Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW) was founded in Chicago in 1974 with the goal of bringing women to the forefront of the workforce as full and equal participants. The records of CLUW document the administration and activities of the national organization and its various chapters undertaken toward this goal. Issues such as affirmative action, pay equity, sex discrimination, child care and family issues, ERA and reproductive freedom are well represented.


Part I: Arranged in 4 series – Series 1 (Boxes 1-6), Series 2 (Boxes 6-7), Series 3 (Boxes 7-14), and Series 4 (Boxes 15-18). Folders are arranged alphabetically by subject or type of material.
Part II: Arranged in 8 series - Series 5 (Boxes 19-32), Series 6 (Boxes 33-39), Series 7 (Boxes 40-49), Series 8 (Boxes 50-63), Series 9 (Boxes 64-72), Series 10 (Boxes 73-74), Series 11 (Boxes 75-84), Series 12 (Boxes 85-86). Folders are listed in the order they appear.
Part III: Files are arranged loosely by subject in the order they were accepted by the Reuther Archives. Box headings give a general indication of the contents, but there is no formal order. Therefore, a subject may be covered and/or duplicated in more than one box. Boxes are numbered 1-45 and do not continue numbering from Part 1 and 2.


Part I: The papers of the Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW) were placed in the Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs between August, 1974, and April, 1981, by the first national president Olga Madar.
Part II: Additions to this collection were received in 1988 through 1993.
Part III: Materials were deposited at the Reuther Library on January 10, 2006.

Related Materials

Reuther Library Collections: CLUW: Metro Detroit Chapter Records, CLUW: San Francisco Chapter Records, CLUW: Seattle Chapter Records, and the Susan Holleran Papers.


Parts I and II: Audiovisual materials such as photographs and some memorabilia have been placed in the Archives Audiovisual Collections.
Part III: Photographs and videos were transferred to the Reuther’s Audiovisual Department. An inventory is available.

Processing History

Part I: Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in September 1983.
Part II: Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in May 1995.
Part III: Processed and finding aid updated by Robbie Terman and edited by Deborah Rice on January 5, 2009.
Guide to the Coalition of Labor Union Women Records
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA