The US’s air traffic control workforce is overstretched, which has led to a big rise in airplane “near misses.” The crisis has roots in Ronald Reagan’s crushing of the 1981 PATCO strike and in the neoliberal attack on public services he helped spearhead.
Joseph A. McCartin is professor of history and executive director of the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor at Georgetown University. He is the author of Collision Course: Ronald Reagan, the Air Traffic Controllers, and the Strike That Changed America.
US public sector unions have gotten a reprieve. Will they use it to rebuild, or squander the opportunity?