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Unions showing renewed strength in recent years

| Nov 7, 2019 | Labor Law |

New York residents may have heard that according to a recent Gallup poll, 64% of Americans approve of unions, which is a 16% increase from 2009. In 2018, employees of 20 major companies went on strike, and that was the highest figure since 2007. Bureau of Labor Statistics data indicated that 485,000 workers were involved in the protests that involved both corporations and school districts. In 2019, teachers from the Chicago public school district went on strike to protest their current working conditions.

Teachers in Chicago were inspired by similar action in states such as Kentucky and West Virginia. Educators also went on strike in Los Angeles, which resulted in a 6% salary increase. It also resulted in fewer students per classroom and additional staff being placed in each building. The protesters in Chicago want to see an increase in pay for themselves as well as for classroom aides. They also want to see classroom sizes go down and for additional staff to be added to the city’s schools.

In other industries, workers are choosing to strike because their paychecks are not keeping up with increasing prices. This has frustrated those who feel that they deserve more of the wealth being generated in a growing economy. The strong economy has led to lower unemployment rates, which has also given workers more leverage to demand more from their employers.

Individuals who are involved in a dispute with their employers may have rights such as refusing to work in dangerous conditions. It may be worthwhile to partner with an attorney who understands state and federal labor laws. This may make it easier for workers to develop strategies that allow them to obtain favorable outcomes in their cases. Favorable outcomes may include working fewer hours, receiving a pay raise or mitigating hazards in the workplace.