American Workers Are Going On Strike In Huge Numbers

Tuesday, February 11, 2020
By Dave Jamieson, Huffpost

U.S. workers continued to throw their weight around in a healthy economy in 2019, recording the largest number of major strikes in the decade.The U.S. saw 25 work stoppages involving at least 1,000 workers last year, according to data released Tuesday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That was the most of any year between 2010 and 2019, a time span in which the average was 15.

The number of strikes is largely a reflection of the tight labor market, which has shifted leverage from employers to workers, coupled with the relatively slow growth in wages. Unions feel more emboldened to carry out strikes when many companies can afford to meet their demands and may have a difficult time finding replacement workers due to low unemployment. The total number of workers who went on strike in those work stoppages was 425,500 ― fewer than the 485,000 in 2018, but still a hefty number by historical standards. Workers generally have not gone on strike in such large numbers since the mid-1980s.

According to the Economic Policy Institute, 2018 and 2019 accounted for the largest two-year average of striking workers in more than three decades.

Read the full story from Huffpost

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