The Labor Center was established in 1987 to provide direct education and research services in higher education to unions in Washington State. The mission of the Labor Center is to deliver high-quality education and training programs for the dynamic and diverse working women and men of Washington State by using best practices of adult education. The curriculum builds the skills, confidence, and knowledge needed for working people to become leaders in efforts to improve their work lives and communities and to promote a just economy through collective action. Though based at South Seattle College, the Labor Center is a statewide organization and a unique program within higher education.
The Center also organizes large public events such as conferences, serves as a resource for faculty, students, and staff, produces the Washington State Workers’ Rights Manual, teaches classes through Continuing Education at South Seattle College, provides contract training to unions and other workers' organizations, and has a book, film, and training materials library available for public use.