Founded in 1976 by David Gordon and Les Leopold with assistance from Tony Mazzocchi. The Labor Institute provides labor unions and community groups with education on health and safety, the environment and the economy. Our goal is to empower working people with information on how best to create a more healthful and just economy. Our guiding principles and our programs grow from the work of Tony Mazzocchi (1926-2002), the labor leader who helped invent the modern occupational health and safety movement and was a leader in the drive to create common cause between the labor and environmental movements.
The Labor Institute also encourages the formation and growth of labor-environmental alliances. Labor Institute staff, working through the Public Health Institute, provided critical assistance to the United Steelworkers and the Sierra Club in the launch and development of the BlueGreen Alliance. Today, BGA is a national coalition of 14 of the country’s largest unions and environmental organizations, representing 15 million Americans.