Why does the US government have the power to break massive union strikes like the one that almost broke out on the railroads last November? Part of the story is a history of conciliatory railway unionism. It’s time to break with that legacy.
Maya Adereth is PhD student in sociology at the London School of Economics and associate editor at Phenomenal World.
The United States is notorious for having the weakest welfare state of any advanced economy. The labor movement needs to fight for social provisions for all workers, not just some.
Revitalizing the labor movement will never happen with one weird trick — it will require both top-down and bottom-up strategies in unions.
The battle for universal health care provision in the US has a long history, closely integrated with feminist demands. As far back as World War I, militant unions like the International Ladies’ Garment Workers radicalized the campaign for health care — and came within an inch of victory.
Mutual aid networks cropped up all over the United States at the start of the lockdown, helping communities organize themselves in the absence of adequate state support. Those projects have a deep history in the US, especially within early organized labor.