Trade Union Impact

850 Words 4 Pages
Unions are a group of workers who band together to improve their employment conditions and protect co-workers and themselves from legal and economic mistreatment. Unions began forming in the mid-19th century, with the American Federation of Labor (AFL) forming in the 1880s. By 1900 there were a million union workers. Though the cause of the impacts may vary, the economy, legislation, and public policy have always had an impact on Union Membership. In the years Union Membership began there were no laws or policies to protect workers from working long hours for minimal pay, no vacation, insurance, or protection from deployable working conditions. The Union fought for equal rights of employees, even based on race and gender, which was irreligious …show more content…
With the New Deal of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, union membership began to blossom and lead to the creation of the Congress of Industrial Organization (CIO). The New Deal was a set of federal programs launched by President Franklin D. Roosevelt after taking office in 1933, in response to the financial disaster of the Great Depression. Within the New Deal were four major goals and achievements: economic recovery, job creation, investment in public works, and civic uplift. Under the job creation the rights of workers to organize in unions was recognized and its growth promoted (Living New Deal, 2015).
Over the years union membership has been on the decline, with 16 million members in the United States, only 13.5% of the total workforce, with only 9.5% being in the public sector (Digital.films.com.mylibrary.wilmu.edu, 2015). Many factors have contributed to this decline including corruption, the economy, and laws and policies to protect workers. In 1957 the AFL-CIO lost the largest union in the country, the Teamsters, with three million members. The teamsters were expelled because of federal criminal charges and not reinstated until 1987. A cloud of suspicion and mistrust continues to hang over the
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Over the past several decades, Congress has passed a number of new laws and directives made to fight employment discrimination of various types. These laws help to establish safe and healthy workplaces, provide family and medical leave, and much more. As a result, the government is assuming more responsibility of the things fought for and protected by the union, leaving workers feeling less need for union membership. In addition the cultural movement toward legislative safeguards has in a large part replaced collective action in the workplace. An example would be, The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person 's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information (Eeoc.gov,

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