Norma Rae | Film Streams
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Norma Rae

Dir. Martin Ritt USA 110 min PG

1979

Norma Rae4

Community Collaboration

Presented with UNO's William Brennan Institute for Labor Studies

To celebrate Labor Day, join us for a post-screening discussion on the goals and struggles of the contemporary labor movement with Alisha Shelton (former candidate for Congress in NE-02), Jen Pellant (Field Coordinator, Western Iowa Labor Federation), and Vic Klafter (campaign organizer).

Film Information

Like a lot of her family before her, Norma Rae works at a local North Carolina textile mill, with meager pay, long hours and unsupportable working conditions. A rousing speech by labor activist Reuben will inspire Norma to rally her fellow workers behind the cause of unionism, while struggling to break down the long-standing ethnic and racial barriers to class solidarity.

Based on the true story of Crystal Lee Sutton and led by the exuberant performance of Sally Field who won the Best Actress Award at both the Oscars and Cannes, Norma Rae is a powerful and moving social drama highlighting the empowering spirit of class struggle.

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Film Stills

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About the panelists

Alisha Shelton is a politician, mental health therapist and community leader. She is a former candidate for Nebraska's Second Congressional District, who ran on a on a platform of economic recovery, increasing access to rural broadband, protecting women's health, expanding affordable health care and fighting climate change.

Jen Pellant (AFT #716) joined Western Iowa Labor Federation as the Field Coordinator in April 2021. In that capacity, she advocates and organizes for more than 10,000 affiliated members in 37 counties in Western Iowa. Prior to joining WILF, Pellant ran for Iowa House District 16 in the 2020 cycle, earning the endorsements and support of Labor unions throughout Omaha and Southwest Iowa. She was raised in a Union household, the daughter of two ISEA-member teachers, and is a dedicated Labor advocate.

Victory Klafter is a campaigns organizer currently working on a ballot initiative to raise our state's minimum wage. He has lived in Lincoln for 7 years and is part of the trans and queer communities, mutual aid groups, and housing rights organizing.

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