Rebuilding Power in Open-Shop America: A Labor Notes Guide

Labor Notes

July 2018

Labor Notes devoted its July 2018 issue to the Janus U.S. Supreme Court decision and its implications. Many readers of the Solidarity website will already be familiar with the the Labor Notes coverage. If you aren’t, the issue is a must-read. Here’s the introduction with links to the articles on the Labor Notes website.

The moment you may have been dreading arrived June 27, when the Supreme Court imposed the open shop on the public sector nationwide with its decision in Janus v. AFSCME District 31.

Instead of the usual mix of articles, this month we’re sharing a special expanded issue of Labor Notes devoted to one topic: our survival guide for rebuilding power in open-shop America. (Are you in the private sector and think this won’t affect you? Don’t get too cozy.)

Janus is a serious blow — but we have good news. As plenty of unions in open-shop states and sectors can testify, it’s still possible to win campaigns and maintain high membership rates despite the legal hurdles. We talked to workers in schools, factories, buses, hospitals, oil refineries, grocery stores, post offices, and shipyards. This guide reveals the principles and practical steps behind their successes.

Here’s the punchline: the unions that build power in open-shop America will be the ones that fight hard on workplace issues their members care about, and where large numbers of rank-and-file members take on their own fights.

Rebuilding Power in Open-Shop America

A Labor Notes Guide
labornotes.org/openshop

Context

How We Got Here
Our Prescription
The Racist History of Right to Work
Who’s Next?
The Anti-Union Game Plan

Diagnostics

Exercise: The Open-Shop Stress Test
Quiz: Assess Your Danger Level
Jump-Starting a Weak Union from Below

Brass Tacks

1. Be Democratic
2. Fight the Boss
3. Turn Up the Heat
4. Ask People to Join
5. Count Noses
6. Don’t Go It Alone

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