Adams, 46, who taught overseas for five years and then taught English in high school for 15 years at Cedar Rapids, said the 2016 election and the removal by the Iowa Legislature under Republican control, Chapter 20, the State Employees Collective Bargaining Act, were the catalyst for pushing his activism into high gear.
As a member of the Iowa State Education Association and the local bargaining team, she understood the importance of bargaining rights for unions and what the loss of bargaining matter meant for members.
“It was just very personal for me because I saw how it would impact me, obviously, but also my colleagues, my colleagues,” Adams said. “So I think at the heart of what made me organize or get involved was simply seeing the impact that some of this legislation would have on my work and the people who are involved. were dear to me. “
Another contributing factor was his experience providing palliative care to his father. Even though he had private insurance, the high cost of health care presented challenges. He died two months before he was eligible for Medicare and Social Security, Adams says. It bothered her that someone could work their entire life and not be able to access these benefits when they needed them.
Much of his job is “just to reach out to people and help them stand up for themselves, give them a platform to be able to tell their story,” Adams said.