ICYMI: New York Magazine: The PRO Act Could Do More Than Revive Unions

By SARAH JONES

Americans like unions, but very few belong to one, a discrepancy that places the U.S. labor movement in a precarious state. In 2017, only 10.7 percent of all Americans belonged to a union, but that same year, a PBS NewsHour poll found that nearly half of all Americans said they’d join a union if they could. Union membership hasn’t budged much since then, even as overall support for unions reached its highest level in a decade — 65 percent of Americans polled by Gallup in 2020 said they approved of unions, up from a low of 48 percent in 2010.

A gap this wide indicates a serious problem. If Americans like unions and want to join them but aren’t, it’s likely because they can’t. Fortunately, a possible fix awaits: The Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act would mark the biggest expansion of collective-bargaining rights in decades. President Biden has said he supports the bill, and he may soon be in a position to make good on that support. The bill passed the House with bipartisan support late on Tuesday evening, and is headed now to the Senate.

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