Working for


Since 1935, the UAW has been a leader in the fight for progressive policies and programs
that have given millions of Americans
the opportunity to realize the
American Dream.

Article Index


What is CAP

  • Community Action Program (CAP) is a Department of the UAW International Union. It is not a political party, nor is it tied to any party. It is the nonpartisan political arm of the UAW. It endorses candidates for public office on the basis of their record and programs - not the party - utilizing a structure of 160 CAP councils across the nation and acting upon their recommendations and endorsements.
  • Presidential and Vice-Presidential endorsements are made by the International Executive Board of the UAW acting upon the secret ballot recommendations of all the UAW Local Unions across the nation.
  • Many people think that we are trying to tell people how to vote. This is simply not true. Many of our members think that part of their union dues go to political groups. That is not the case.

What CAP Does

  • CAP helps register Union members and their families so they can vote and make their voices heard.
  • CAP distributes the voting of candidates to members so they can be informed voters.
  • CAP endorses candidates on the basis of their voting records and/or their programs - not on the basis of their party affiliation.
  • CAP conducts voluntary V-CAP Check-off drives asking our members to contribute to V-CAP. Federal law prohibits the use of dues funds as contributions to candidates for federal and some state offices.
  • CAP contributes to endorsed candidates from funds collected in voluntary dollar drives.
  • CAP urges Union members, their families and friends to vote.
  • Most of CAP’s political efforts are done by volunteers - Union members, friends and families - who put in many hours phone banking, door knocking, literature drops, and getting out the vote on Election Day.
  • In addition, CAP involves itself in many local community projects helping to bring about a better quality of life where our members live and work.
What CAP Doesn't Do
  • CAP does not tell anyone how to vote.
  • CAP does not force any Union member to participate in V-CAP.
  • CAP does not use dues money to make contributions to federal or state candidates (only moneys raised from V-CAP drives or raffles can be used).

V-CAP Check-off

  • The UAW's V-CAP Check off is a voluntary program that allows you to make a modest contribution each month to help your Union support candidates who stand up for American workers and their jobs.
  • By law, Union dues can't be used to support any federal candidate, and in an ever-increasing number of states, any candidate for public office. Our only means of monetary support for many labor-endorsed candidates is voluntary political contributions which are put into the International Union's political action fund, UAW V-CAP.
  • If you are interested in having a voice in how the government is run, consider contributing to the V-CAP Check-off.
  • Realizing that what is gained at the Bargaining table can be taken away with a stroke of a pen at the Legislative Conference tables, and it is all of our jobs to be committed to defending politically what is gained collectively!

Why Labor Is In Politics

  • Labor Unions have always been under constant attack from business, industrial organizations and often from state and national legislatures and political leaders. Every time the US Congress or a state legislature opens a new session, a flood of bills intended to restrict the rights of workers and their families are introduced.
  • Workers have learned through bitter experience that there is a powerful link between the bread box and the ballot box. Gains won at the bargaining table or through sacrifice on the picket line can be wiped out by unwise actions of state or national legislatures and political leaders - that today's wage increase can be erased by taxes or inflation, or your job vanish in a wave of unemployment. Thus, unions are in politics to protect the welfare and security of their members.

You can become involved

  • Participate in CAP programs in your local Union.
  • Help in voter registration and get-out-the-vote.
  • Work to help the election of CAP endorsed candidates.
  • Most importantly VOTE for candidates that have proven and will continue to stand up for workers’ rights to help secure a future for you and your family.
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