Saqib Bhatti and Stephen Lerner want to transform the work of labor unions. Instead of focusing on and settling for the limited gains offered by bargaining with individual employers, they say that “...unions need to start looking to the actors higher up the food chain, to the people who control the money in the public sector as well as the private sector.” Those people, of course, are the nation’s biggest investors. In "Labor Must Take On Capital," Bhatti and Lerner offer evidence and data to support their case, and provide examples of how a confident labor movement can change the economy. The Metro Council plans to organize a forum/presentation on these new strategies and efforts at an upcoming delegate meeting this fall. Bhatti is director of the ReFund America Project and a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute, and Lerner is a fellow at Georgetown University's Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor and an architect of the Justice for Janitors campaign. Bhatti and Lerner's article "Labor Must Take On Capital" first appeared in Jacobin Online on Aug. 9 and was republished by Portside.
photo: Labor and community groups at a fast-food workers' action in New York, NY on December 5, 2013. Michael Fleshman / Flickr