Work in Progress: The State of the Unions Two Years after the AFL-CIO Split

Source: Jim McNeill, Dissent, Spring 2007

So how should we gauge the performance of the two federations since the split? Mere survival has to be seen as an achievement for the AFL-CIO, which had to cut a quarter of its 420-person staff in 2005. And the old federation has done more than survive. It’s made important progress in the fight to improve the country’s terrible labor laws, and several AFL-CIO unions are doing some solid organizing. It shows signs of life that are worth exploring. The real pressure is on CTW to justify the breakup. The upstart federation made some bold promises when it bolted the AFL-CIO. As its two-year anniversary approaches, it’s not unreasonable to ask whether progress is being made. Has CTW got a realistic plan to revive America’s unions or is it squandering precious resources on a miracle cure?

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