In Focus is a question-and-answer series with people who are members of SEIU 503–085 UO.
Please introduce yourself and explain your job.
My name is John Taylor. I work in Knight Library in the Electronic Resources Unit, where I maintain access to around 500,000 electronic journals and databases such as JSTOR and LexisNexis. I’ve worked in academic libraries since 2005 in various capacities including digital preservation and web development.
What does the union mean to you? Why are you a member, and how did you get involved?
Belonging to a union means many things to me. Having grown up in a so-called Right-to-Work state, belonging to a union means job security, better wages, health benefits, and having a voice regarding my working conditions.
It means taking part in a proud tradition of working class solidarity and standing for core democratic values such as economic justice and the rights of workers.
It also means joining other voices within the labor movement to fight for a more just, sane, and equitable society for all working Americans.
In addition to acting as Chief Steward with the union local at the University of Oregon, I serve on the statewide Board of Directors, Citizen Action for Political Education, Committee for the Future, and I’m currently enrolled in the Oregon Labor Candidate School.
Beyond the UO and the union, what is John Taylor all about? Tell us about how you like to have fun or something you spend your time and effort on.
I’m a full-time armchair politician, occasional guitar player and audio engineer, and sometimes audiobook narrator. I enjoy a good dark beer, books on philosophy and science, and all things heavy metal.