At Liberty Podcast: The Resurgence of Labor Strikes and Union Power

Unions are having a moment.

WGA Strike

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If you’re staying up to date with the news, you may have noticed that unions are having a moment. This summer alone, strikes by members of the WGA, UAW, SAG-AFTRA, UPS, Starbucks, Amazon, and Kaiser Permanente unions, among others, have made headlines and signaled solidarity between workers across the nation. Last year, public support for unions hit a 57-year high, with 71% of Americans expressing a favorable opinion.

However, unions themselves are not a utopia. At the ACLU, we’ve sided with and against unions to secure worker’s rights, specifically those of women and pregnant people. There’s still much work to be done to ensure that all workers are treated fairly, but one thing remains clear: unions can be a powerful force for securing civil rights and civil liberties.

Journalist Kim Kelly is a firm believer in the power of organized labor. After years of reporting on the nationwide labor movement, she released “Fight Like Hell: The Untold History of American Labor.” The book chronicles historical labor movements across several industries, focusing on the people from marginalized groups who led them, along with their wins and their losses. Kelly joins us today to help us connect our past to our present and deepen our understanding of the ongoing fight for worker’s rights. 

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