UFC fighter Leslie Smith is the interim president of Project Spearhead, which is attempting to unionize MMA fighters in an attempt to get a vote from the National Labor Relations Board to determine if they are independent contractors or employees of the organization.
If the UFC fighters are considered to be employees, a vote would be held by the UFC fighters and if they are in favor of Project Spearhead, a union would then be allowed to form.
James Lynch of Fightful recently reported on Twitter that the organization is also going to reach out to Bellator MMA fighters in an attempt to get them on board.
Smith is stating that Bellator fighters are going to be welcomed into the group, but the path isn’t as clear for the interim president to get the job done since she is a UFC fighter.
“I’ve been open to working with other promotions — specifically Bellator — for a long time,” Smith said to Bloody Elbow. “I don’t know as many people in Bellator, so for me to just dive right in with Bellator, I didn’t see as clear a path with going after Bellator. I don’t have the same connections with the different fighters and I’m not as deeply involved with Bellator. But Kajan says that he is, and the goal is ultimately to help all the fighters that are fighting in the major organizations get treated. As soon as Kajan said that he sees a way to make it happen, then I said that was great and let’s do it.”
If Bellator MMA fighters wanted to join the group, a decision would then have to be made by the board as to keep both promotions competitors in one group or to keep them all separated.
While Smith does want the Bellator fighters on board, it would have to be done without slowing the progress being made in the UFC at the moment.
“I don’t want to do anything that’s going to slow down our process with the UFC, so if we’re not on the same timeline, that is gonna probably lead to us keeping them separate,” Smith said. “But if we can get everything on the same timeline (we could keep them together) — and there’s a good chance that we can, because of the momentum.”
Other than Smith, other UFC stars that are a part of Project Spearhead include Kajan Johnson (Interim Vice President) and Al Iaquinta (interim treasurer & secretary).