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Articles on Unions

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T.C. (Tommy) Douglas, shown in this 1961 photo being held up by supporters, after being chosen leader of the newly form New Democratic Party. He is held by trade unionist Claude Jodoin (left), national CCF president David Lewis and British Labour leader Hugh Gaitshell. (CP PHOTO)

The NDP turns 60: It’s never truly been the political arm of organized labour

The political muscle of unions that helped to launch the NDP in was never that strong in the first place. Even worse for the party, it’s atrophied considerably over the course of the last 60 years.
Nearly 1,000 workers at this Smithfield Foods pork-processing plant in South Dakota contracted COVID-19 between mid-March and mid-April 2020. Kerem Yucel / AFP via Getty Images

Meatpacking plants have been deadly COVID-19 hot spots – but policies that encourage workers to show up sick are legal

Thousands of workers at meat- and poultry-processing plants have contracted COVID-19, and hundreds have died. A legal scholar recommends ways to make their jobs safer.
Digital news organizations like Buzzfeed and Vox are among those where journalists are unionizing. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)

What’s behind the new push for unionization by journalists

Union drives continue to launch at news organizations in the United States and Canada. The COVID-19 pandemic has not diminished journalists’ resolve to build a safety net — and to protect journalism.
About 150 nursing union members show support for long-term care workers at the Orchard Villa Long-Term Care in Pickering, Ont., in June 2020. The facility was hit hard by COVID-19 infections. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

How women are changing the face of Canada’s union leadership

Unions must continue to try to recruit and sustain a critical mass of women, particularly visible minority and LBGTQ women, into leadership roles in the years to come.
Protesters in front of Boston Police Headquarters during a United Against Racist Police Terror Rally on June 7, 2020. Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Police unions are one of the biggest obstacles to transforming policing

Across the United States, police are shielded from both public and departmental accountability by multiple layers of contractual and legislative protections.
Two health-care workers arrive at a walk-in COVID-19 test clinic in Montréal on March 23, 2020. Unionized nurses are among those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson

Coronavirus crisis poses risks and opportunities for unions

Nurses, cleaners, grocery store clerks and other unionized workers have been on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19. They should emerge from it with a greater level of respect.
President Donald Trump shakes hands with Walmart CEO Doug McMillon at a White House press conference joining government and corporate officials – but no representatives of workers. AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Workers left out of government and business response to the coronavirus

If government and business collaborate with workers, a scholar of labor relations writes, current economic problems could get less severe, the recovery smoother and lasting prosperity more likely.

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