Monday, June 27, 2005

Carpenters Join Reformist Unions

Via Ezra Klein and Working Life.

The United Brotherhood of Carpenters (UBC) is joining the Change to Win Coalition, the group of unions led by Andy Stern and SEIU to revolutionize the labor movement in America, direct its resources toward organizing and make labor relevant in America again. This is not shocking, but it is good news. The Carpenters left the AFL-CIO in 2001 for much the same reason that the UBC formed. The Carpenters are a large union and generally the most progressive of the old-time craft unions. Having them in the Coalition only brings more credibility to this necessary revolt against the status quo among labor in the United States.

Working Life particularly makes some good points about how the size of the Carpenters makes the Coalition unions a sizeable force in American labor and how 3 of the 6 unions now involved, Carpenters, Teamsters, and Laborers, are from the building trades and how that could scare the heck out the staid old trade unions who might fear that someone will actually come and start organizing blue collar workers in America again.