Worker Cooperatives

Cooperatives (or co-ops) are entities that buy and sell goods and services, just like traditional businesses, but they are owned by their members or workers, rather than by shareholders. Worker cooperatives empower workers to make decisions that impact their lives and livelihoods, learn new skills, and share equally in a business's profits.

Cooperation Humboldt is committed to supporting existing co-ops and incubating new co-ops. We are a member of the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives and we use USFWC curriculum and support for our programs.

Free Introductory Webinar

SOLD OUT: May 27, 2020 at 2 p.m.

REGISTER NOW for June 9 at 5:00 p.m.

Are you good at what you do? In a worker-owned cooperative, the people who do the work make the decisions and share the profits.

In this free webinar, we will inspire you to start a worker-owned cooperative, connect you to potential co-owners, answer your questions, and introduce you to our Co-op Academy, which supports the development of worker-owned cooperatives.

Webinar Registration:

Our Co-op Academy

In our Co-op Academy, people who are serious about starting a cooperative can take skill-building classes that initiate your planning and development process. The Academy is supported by the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives, which provides curriculum, peer support, mentorship, and legal support. 

To accommodate different schedules, we are offering two Academies this Summer. You can pick the one that works best for you.

Co-op Academy
June 22, 26, 29 and July 3
11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Zoom
$60 for the series – Low-income scholarships available

Co-op Academy 
July 6, 8, 13 and 15
4:00 to 5:30 p.m. on Zoom
$60 for the series – Low-income scholarships available

Academy subjects include:

  • Cooperative Financial Models
  • Core Team Development
  • Cooperative Leadership, Management and Decision-making
  • Your Cooperative Vision and Mission

According to the Democracy at Work Institute (DAWI), employee-owned businesses are more productive and have more stability than traditional businesses. Worker owned co-ops have much lower rates of employee turnover and business closing, are almost always more profitable, and pay better wages to workers.

Because the people doing the work for the company are also the ones who own the company, they feel a greater sense of responsibility for and personal stake in helping the business succeed. Equally important, a worker owned coop instills a sense of autonomy, dignity and empowerment. We believe these are essential characteristics for a self-governing people.

We aim to amplify the great things already happening in the solidarity economy here on the North Coast, as well as to build our community's capacity for responsible resilience going forward. Please explore, connect with, and support the people and organizations listed below already doing great work, and/or contact us to join our work towards making this program area even more robust!

Other Resources

The Democracy Collaborative

RESTIF Cleaning - a 100% employee-owned, local company