Second open letter to union-busting Seward Co-op: stop illegally harassing Amy Swenson.


This is my second open letter to Seward Co-op’s board, HR, and managers regarding unionization efforts at Seward, and your by-the-book union bashing.

After my first letter, Sean sent me an email all about how cooperative they were being with the union. Look! He said. Look how great we are being!

This letter was clearly a lie.

You continue to have ‘disciplinary meetings’ with one of the major organizers.

I see you. I know what you are doing. This is a classic intimidation technique, and an attempt to not only silence her, but cow others into submission and fear.

I am beyond disgusted. Stop this NOW. Everyone can see you. We can all see what you are doing. This is NOT what the co-op movement is all about.

You should all be ashamed of yourselves. You are on the wrong side of history. Stop. NOW.

Most extremely sincerely,
Haddayr Copley-Woods
Member # 31XXX


On Being SEEN

Today, walking downtown, I approached a man sitting on a windowsill, holding a cane.

We locked eyes and exchanged the Crip Nod. We know what it’s like to have people look away from you on the street.

“How are you TODAY?” he asked.

“TODAY is good,” I said. “How’s it going TODAY?”

“Good, good.”

No one else would have heard the emphasis I provided. Just us. We know some days are better than others.


A few blocks further down, I was stopped at a light waiting for it to change when a beautiful young woman with a sleek, close hair cut stood next to me.

“Happy Pride!” she said.

I looked down. I was wearing no rainbows, no ‘GAY AF’ shirt, no Secret Queer Army pin. She just knew.

I lit up. “Happy Pride!” I said.

All the way to my errand, I was grinning.

Thanks for seeing me, random strangers. I hope you felt seen, too.


My open letter on union busting by the Seward Co-op


Dear Board, Manager Sean Doyle, and HR Director Liz Wozniak,

When I received your ridiculously slick corporate letter about the unionization efforts of the workers at Seward Co-op, stating that Seward would be forcing them to hold an election, I immediately knew you were engaged in an illegal intimidation campaign.
I knew this because forcing an election in the face of an overwhelming majority of signed cards is a classic union-busting technique, and I was not born yesterday. 
You are stalling to give yourself more time to intimidate, harass, and probably fire one or two of them as an example to others: to fill them with too much fear to vote for the union.
My assumptions, of course, have since been backed up by multiple sources working in the store that I co-own.
I know you. I see you. And this garbage is utterly abhorrent, especially as a co-op. 
I demand that you recognize the union.
I demand that you stop illegally harassing workers, specifically Amy Swenson.
How dare you use my membership money to union bust? How dare you?
Most definitely sincerely,
Haddayr Copley-Woods
Member/Owner, Seward Coop
PS I am not threatening to leave the coop. I am not going anywhere. I am contacting leaders right now after I have sent this email to find out how I can help them.

This is what white privilege looks like

Here is what white privilege looks like, even if you don’t have a lot of money and have other stuff stacked against you:
I saw a couple cops at Chipotle a few days ago. I was very very very tired from moving and painting and moving again and moving again, and so my usual wary look whenever I see cops probably looked much more hostile.
The cops immediately changed their order to go, followed me and my boys out of the place, and begin to follow me. They followed very closely, and waited until I put on my signal each time I turned to put on their signal. They wanted me to see that they were following me. I raced through my mind whether I’d paid my tabs, weather my very hungry breath might be confused for alcohol on my breath, if when I got pulled over Arie would flip out, I wondered if they were running my plates and made sure through my head that there is nothing they would find, which of course there wasn’t. I kept my hands at 10 and 2. I came to a very very very full and complete stop at all stop signs, and I waited for a while before I started when the lights would change. I was so so careful. 
After they had seen me nervously checking my rearview mirror over and over and met my eyes multiple times, I guess they figured that they had taught me not to glare at cops, and they turned and went their way.
At no point during any of this did I have even a MOMENT of fear for my life.