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Strike activity increased significantly from 2021 to 2022, according to a study released Monday by Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR).
The number of strikes increased from 279 in the previous year to a total of 424 (including seven lockouts where employers stopped workers from coming and going), a 52% increase.
“Management seems to be learning a lesson through strikes,” says Harry Katz, professor of collective bargaining at the ILR. told CBS News.
“We are being taught how much power workers are actually improving their bargaining power,” he added.
Origin of the report Data published by the ILR on strikes and leave activity Through our Labor Action Tracker, which uses sources such as news articles and social media to identify and verify strikes and work stoppages.
The ILR said budget cuts in the 1980s stopped the Bureau of Labor Statistics from tracking strikes by fewer than 1,000 workers.
“To keep journalists, policy makers, activists, and academics informed about labor movements and unrest across the country, it is imperative to have reliable data on strike activity by union and nonunion workers of all sizes. Yes,” said Johnny Karas. He is a PhD ILR candidate, co-author of the report, and one of the database leaders.
According to Tracker, the industry with the most strikes was accommodation and food services, which accounted for 34% of strikes. Most of these were led by Starbucks employees and fast food employees, seeking a $15 minimum wage. fight for $15, ILR said in a release.
The leading industry for the number of workers who went on strike was education services, with 60% of workers on strike. this is, Education worker activism and a massive strike by graduate students in the 10-campus University of California system.
However, despite the rise, the ILR notes that it is difficult to see this year as the best year. “The number of workers engaged in work stoppages over the past two years lags behind recent increases in organizing documented by the government. 2018 and 2019‘ writes.
Katz also told CBS that this was not a “revolutionary” seizure of power by unions compared to the number of strikes in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, the outlet wrote. .