Growing up, Bob was raised in a union family. His father worked on the railroad, and his mother was a nurse. Both were members of unions. Today, as former State Department employees in the U.S. Foreign Service, Bob and his wife, Peggy, are members of the AFSA.
Amidst all the barbeques, fairs, and other celebrations on Labor Day Weekend, we need to take time to recognize the meaning of our celebrations. Through policies that protect our workers, we must continuously recognize the many contributions the labor movement has made to America's strength, prosperity, and well-being.
Unions address an unequal power structure between the employee and employer, and it is one of the most vital roles in our society. Without unions addressing a level playing field, workers, as a collective, would have essentially zero power.
Organized labor allows for negotiations to take place between employers and employees. We must provide a counterweight to corporate influence. Unions can use their 'people power' to match the employer's 'dollar power' and find reasonable solutions and positive outcomes for both parties.
Unions look for win-win results for employers and employees. With this, both will succeed.
Benefits for the employer:
Improved economic growth and productivity
Enhanced product or service delivery and quality
Decreased worker turnover
Benefits for all employees - unionized or not:
Improved workplace health and safety
Higher wages and salaries, and benefits
A powerful force for equality resulting in decreased gender and racial wage gaps
The benefits to the public are clear because we are the recipients of better products, services, and better wages.
Union membership has plunged, especially in the private sector, since the 1980s. We should be worried about this since it correlates with rising economic inequality and falling wages.
Bob believes in legislation that advances the labor cause - prevailing wage, collective bargaining, community benefit agreements, worker health and safety protections, and eliminating obstacles for unions to organize.
Today and every day, Bob Lorinser will celebrate and partner with unions. He will celebrate all workers and win-win results that embody unity. Bob believes that when we work together, when we strive to improve our work environments in negotiations, contracts, and positive relationships with our employers, we contribute to mutual success, economic growth, and a better, more productive society.