Vox   ·   Link to Article

Why unions are growing and shrinking at the same time

Creating worker-led unions also means finding, teaching, and promoting union leadership from within — especially workers who demographically represent their workforce.

“I was a bartender and a busboy,” said Ted Pappageorge, secretary-treasurer of the Culinary Workers Union Local 226, a Nevada union that has members from 178 countries. “All of our folks came out of the ranks, like a lot of other unions, but we spend a lot of time developing leadership inside the rank-and-file and they have big-time decision-making [capabilities] when it comes to these organizing drives.”

The Culinary Union has become such a powerful force that it helped sway Nevada for Biden in the last presidential election. The union’s membership is still down about 20 percent from pre-pandemic numbers because it works so heavily with resorts, which have been struggling as business travel slowly returns, but in the previous 25 years, the union had seen its size triple. 

More News

Get Connected