The Great Depression triggered a pandemic that affected labor unions and their members in ways that are still felt today. During this time, there was an increase in the number of strikes, lockouts, and the formation of unions. Much like many other things during the Great Depression, union membership fell, as workers couldn’t afford to pay dues or support their union financially. 

To understand how the COVID virus affected labor unions in 2020 and beyond, it is important to understand what unions do and how they function as a collective. Unions are essentially bargaining agents for employees. There are different types of labor unions – some smaller ones focus on a specific industry or job type (e.g., carpenters may have their own unique union), while there are also larger national or international organizations that cover multiple industries (e.g., AFL-CIO).

Read the full article on how COVID affected labor unions on our sister site, the Village Voice, here.

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