The State of the Unions
Lori Armstrong Halber and Rick Grimaldi’s article “The State of the Unions,” was featured in November issue of Keystone Business.
The labor movement has long been associated by many with radical Marxist socialism. The early labor movement conjures up images of the International Workers of the World (IWW, or Wobblies as they were known), the slogan “International Workers of the World Unite” and Reds’ John Reed. But in many respects, the labor movement is a creation of the capitalist system: It grew in response to a need in the market to protect the common interest of workers. At a time when workers were exploited, unions fought for better wages, reasonable hours and safer working conditions. The labor movement led efforts to stop child labor, give health benefits and provide aid to workers who were injured or retired. In the last 50 years, however, the government has legislated much of what unions historically sought to protect.
In the article, Lori and Rick discuss the evolving changes in the workplace and the effect this may have on unions in the near future.