Teachable Moments: Unions and Collective Bargaining Reduce Poverty

“…unions lift up wages, standards and security for all workers, not just their own members, through their influence on the actions of non-union employers, their influence on policy and politics, and their ability to provide a collective voice for workers’ interests on all issues.”

Unifor economist Jim Stanford, using data from OECD countries, compares collective bargaining coverage to levels of poverty and income inequality.

The conclusion: poverty and inequality rates are inversely proportional to collective bargaining coverage, when achieved through unions and supported by labour law. Higher rates of unionization = less poverty.

Teachable Moments is an ETT Weekly/website-feature highlighting labour, education, and politics-themed quotes from the past and present, with the goal to engage and inform.