Unions are the solution



Unions are the solution to a rigged economy. I see it in our district: Working people struggle in an economy rigged against them in favor of corporate CEOs and the wealthy. That’s not by accident. Corporate special interests have written the economic rules to favor their own interests. Now people are working longer hours for less pay and many are trapped in a downward economic spiral. One of the solutions to this trend is to give working people more freedom to join together in strong unions.

In 1968, when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Memphis sanitation workers demanded the freedom to join a union, they pushed back against racist “right-to-work” laws and won rights that benefited future generations. Unions have always provided a path to the middle class, especially for women and people of color. They have provided working people the freedom to negotiate better pay and protections and provided stability for families. Without the freedom to come together, working people would not have the power in numbers they need to make our communities safer, stronger and more prosperous.

The CEOs who have rigged our economy want to make it even harder for working people to get by. They even want to use the Supreme Court (Janus vs. AFSCME Council ) to divide working people and limit our power in numbers. They know that unions give workers a powerful voice in speaking up for themselves, their families and their communities. It’s time for our communities to come together and support the freedom for people to join strong labor unions.

(Randy Beightol is with the Northern Tier Central Labor Council AFL-CIO.)