Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I’m Still Looking For The Union Label

By Lynn Wolfe

While growing up in New York City, I remember a television commercial that supported labor unions. Many years later, I can still hear those women singing, “Look for the Union Label . . . .,” in TV Ads like the one posted at the bottom of this article.

However, somewhere along the years, these valuable jobs were exported to China and Viet Nam because Americans wanted inexpensive merchandise that came in a store with “Mart” in its name.

We had a President in the 80s (shockingly, a one-time Union President himself) who had very little respect for the type of American workers who showered after work, not before, and the anti-union movement started gathering steam.

Fast -forward to our current news cycle and the war against organized labor continues. So I decided to take a little stroll down memory lane and revisit some of the everyday-things that unions are responsible for.
  • Weekends
  • 40-hour work week
  • Unemployment insurance
  • Safe working conditions
  • Medical benefits
  • Sick days
Quite frankly, these are a few of my favorite – and necessary - things. Therefore, I’m going to make an attempt to look for the union label during my shopping excursions. I’m also going to hug a teacher and thank the next Teamster I come across.

Clasaic Union Ad

Firefighter Mike DeGarmo, criticizing
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker for
refusing to drop his assault on public
employee bargaining rights.

Editorial note: Americans decisively support laws ensuring the collective bargaining rights of public employee unions by a nearly two-to-one margin, according to a new USA Today/Gallup poll.

Sixty-one percent said they oppose legislation stripping those rights in their states, as compared to only thirty-three percent who said they favor such laws, a striking discrepancy that shows public opinion firmly on one side of a growing national fight. The wide poll margin undercuts Republican claims that the American people want to outlaw labor unions.

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