Working In These Times
Atlanta Black Star
Given the public sector is the largest employer of African-Americans, and recognizing their substantial and traditional involvement in unions — Black workers are more likely to belong to a union than any other racial group — such anti-union campaigns as Right to Work have particular implications for African-Americans.
Unions must expand beyond narrow bargaining to challenge those who hold wealth and power at the highest levels. Most unions are accustomed to bargaining with their direct employers, as they have done for decades. But the financialization of the economy has rendered that structure obsolete. In order to win for workers, unions need to take their demands directly to those who actually have the money and control. They can often be found on Wall Street.
The Wall Street Journal Law Blog
The court is considering whether to overrule its 1977 decision allowing states to require public employees to join a union or pay a fee to cover collective bargaining costs. A win for the plaintiffs—a group of California teachers who say they oppose union efforts to increase pay and protect job security—could cripple public sector unions in about two dozen states that have “agency fee” laws.
Los Angeles Times
The court case could pose a major threat to public-sector unions whose clout grew in the 1970s after the high court upheld laws requiring all employees who benefit from collective bargaining to contribute to the union. Although teachers and other public workers may refuse to pay dues used to support a union's political activities, they can still be forced to pay a so-called "fair share" fee that covers operation costs.
The Washington Post
Successful political movements, whether on the left or the right, require long-term investments in organizations that can develop and promote policy ideas over many decades. Such movements must continue to operate in between election cycles, and change the structure of government policy in durable ways that benefit a movement’s allies and disadvantage its opponents. One group that exemplifies such strategies is the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC.
The Detroit News (Associated Press)
A majority of union members today now have ties to a government entity, at the federal, state or local levels. Roughly 1-in-3 public-sector workers is a union member, compared with about 1-in-15 for the private-sector workforce. The typical union worker now is more likely to be an educator, office worker or food or service industry employee rather than a construction worker, autoworker, electrician or mechanic. Far more women than men are in unions.