Supreme Court Janus Decision Signals Race to the Bottom for America’s Workers

Release Date: 
June 27, 2018
New York, NY – Today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in Janus v. AFSCME Council 31 is a blow to workplace democracy—furthering the consolidation of power arrayed against workers by big business and greedy special interests. By allowing workers who benefit from a negotiated union contract to get a free ride by not paying any “agency fee” to support collective bargaining, the conservatives on the Court have knowingly hobbled the right of workers to stick together to demand better treatment on the job.
 
In response to this decision Tamara Draut, Vice President of Policy and Research at Demos issued the following statement:
 
“The court’s decision to undermine organized labor in America weakens our nation’s economic foundation and opens up our workforce to further exploitation by big corporations, politicians and wealthy interests.
 
“America’s working families and our economy are strongest and most stable when workers have the right to collectively bargain for higher wages, better benefits and job protections. We all benefit from the progress made by the organized labor movement in our country, and must pay our fair share to ensure that continues.
 
“Despite this setback in the courtroom, working people must continue to band together to fight for fair wages and basic human decency at work. Teacher strikes and restaurant worker rallies are just the beginning—the sleeping giant is waking. Let’s be clear: this attack on organized labor is part of a conservative power grab to undermine working-class solidarity by reducing the ability of workers to join together in union to create better lives for themselves and their communities.”
 
Tamara Draut has written extensive research and commentary on labor issues and the new working class, including her most recent book Sleeping Giant: The Untapped Economic and Political Power of America’s New Working Class;  “A Better Deal,” a policy agenda adopted by Senate Democrats to support working-class AmericansStrapped: Why America’s 20- and 30-Somethings Can’t Get Ahead (2006), “Message to Democrats: Don’t run away from race and class in 2018 and 2020 elections,” and “After 100 days of Trump, middle America has suffered — bigly.” She recently released a primer on the working class, “Understanding the Working Class,” which goes into detail on the demographic, economic, and political characteristics of the new working class.
 
###