We put workers at the center of key decisions to create institutions that are responsive to workers’ needs.
We believe that all workers deserve access to assets, opportunities, and social and political capital.
We partner with communities to build worker power, transform businesses, and interrupt systemic oppression.
Envisioning a New Economy
ICA seeks to change the nature of work by advancing businesses and institutions that center worker voice, grow worker wealth, and build worker power. We seek to create, promote, and support jobs, while collaborating with workers to define a truly entrepreneurial, democratic, and community-minded economy.
ICA’s Program Areas
Creating opportunities for worker cooperatives and supporting business owners with a suite of tools designed for understanding governance structures, operations, succession planning, and expansion.
Increasing the financial resilience of businesses and improving job quality with industry-focused resources and consulting, cooperative conversions, and worker-centered purchasing cooperatives.
Strengthening and scaling worker-ownership in the home care industry with strategic planning, business consulting, and cooperative conversions.
Improving the quality and dignity of temporary work by connecting employment social enterprises, developing best practices, and providing technical assistance.
The ICA Group is a leading expert on worker ownership and the oldest national organization dedicated to the development of worker cooperatives.
We are a mission-driven nonprofit organized as a worker cooperative and are dedicated to bringing strategic analysis and industry-focused supports to the worker ownership sector. Our business expertise is bolstered by a deep understanding of worker ownership and other worker-centered structures and a commitment to serving low-wage workers and communities of color.
Since 1977, ICA has launched dozens of worker-owned cooperatives and social enterprises, helped dozens of companies convert to worker ownership, and created and preserved over 10,000 jobs.
Mētis Construction creates jobs and opportunities for craftspeople
Mētis Construction of Seattle identified worker ownership as an ideal solution to recruit and retain skilled carpenters while providing dignified jobs in their community. The ICA Group helped Mētis form a worker-owned and controlled company committed to the highest level of craft.
Building Business Blocks for Child Care Success
Child care business owners don’t always have the time or resources to focus on the business side of their child care operation. To help support this need, the ICA Group hosted a free business development and training conference and plans to launch a shared services cooperative in Detroit.
Cooperative Care provides quality home care in rural Wisconsin
Cooperative Care, a worker-owned home care business in rural Wisconsin, is committed to maintaining a culture of respect and understanding while providing the highest quality of care. ICA has helped the business strengthen their management culture by providing technical assistance, strategic planning, and leadership development.
First Step Staffing supports workforce development growth
First Step Staffing, a nonprofit dedicated to helping individuals re-enter the workforce, has created thousands of jobs following a successful strategy for workforce development growth. The ICA Group supported the agency’s expansion by forging relationships with social impact lenders and conducting market research.
Over the last five years, ICA has developed worker ownership networks in the home care and child care sectors and built two state-based ownership opportunities programs that focus on preserving small firms whose owners are looking to exit the business. We have honed our technical assistance tools and procedures, built partnerships with critical community and industry groups, and identified owners and leaders of successfully converted firms who will serve as champions and advocates for worker ownership.
Massachusetts Center for Employee Ownership
After a 10-year gap, the legislature refunded the Massachusetts Center for Employee Ownership and engaged ICA and Working Wealth to administer it in 2019. Read More
NYC Department of Small Business Services
In 2015, the ICA Group began work with the City of New York’s Department of Small Business Services with the goal of fighting income inequality across the five boroughs. Read More
Alternative Staffing Alliance
Alternative staffing is an enterprise strategy designed to help job seekers with barriers to employment enter and succeed in the labor market. Read More
The Trust for Workers
In January 2018, ICA began the process of creating a joint venture to build the economic security of home care workers and create a supportive environment for home care workers. Read More
CoRise is a cooperative of home-based child care providers in Illinois. Developed in partnership with Service Employees International Union, his social enterprise launched in Fall of 2018 following extensive market research and provider engagement. Read More
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