On August 18, 2021, the workers of Current Affairs announced that they suffered retaliatory firings in response to a campaign reorganizing the magazine into a worker co-op. These organizational efforts took place over the course of more than a year, and the workers at Current Affairs — a magazine that proudly calls itself a socialist publication — believed that they had the support of Editor-in-Chief Nathan J. Robinson. The fired workers are now soliciting donations for a hardship fund via Cash App.
On August 7, after discussing organizational models for transforming the workplace into a democratic environment where “all voices were equally valued”, Robinson became agitated and, the following day, started to request resignations from workers, eliminate positions and terminate Freelance Contributing Editor Aisling McCrea.
The team at Current Affairs released a statement, signed by five workers (Allegra Silcox, Lyta Gold, Kate Christian Gauthreaux, Aisling McCrea and Cate Root), speaking to the betrayal, sadness and anger that they felt in the wake of the firings.
This authoritarian act, damaging to both the fired staff and the publication that they helped become a leading leftist magazine, was compounded by the fact that Current Affairs regularly published many articles supporting unionization, organizing and democratic workplaces, making the sudden firings even more outrageous.
The IWW Freelance Journalists Union is committed to the motto of the Industrial Workers of the World: “An injury to one is an injury to all.” The IWW FJU is also committed to the principle of power being held by the workers, rather than hoarded by the bosses.