Labor Movement's Future

Can unions regain some of their lost power?


The labor movement has been losing members over the past two decades - and political and economic clout as well. Now, the new president of the AFL-CIO is vowing to reinvigorate the labor federation. John J. Sweeney promises to organize more workers, increase union activism and spend up to $35 million to mobilize pro- labor voters for the November elections. Business groups and other labor critics maintain that unions are no longer needed to protect workers' rights. And Republicans charge that the planned media campaign violates federal campaign disclosure laws. Despite the criticisms, Sweeney insists that his new policies are laying the groundwork for a much stronger labor movement in the future.

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