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Unions and Nonprofits

Several unions have stepped up organizing nonprofit employees. These unions are usually targeting workers at progressive research and advocacy organizations. It makes sense, because such workers are often union-sympathetic already. It’s often also assumed that such organizations will be more labor-friendly than for-profit enterprises. Sometimes that’s true and sometimes it’s not. Yesterday I hit the […]

Alphabet Workers Union Responds to Google Layoffs

A guest contribution from CLN member Stephen McMurtry On Friday, 20 January, Google parent company Alphabet announced that it would cut 6% of its workforce, or 12,000 employees. Alphabet was one of the last of the big tech corporations to do so: Facebook, Microsoft, and Amazon had already fired over 10,000 workers each, and tech […]

FMLA Turns 30

But when will the US join the world and assure PAID family leave? The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is now 30 years old. The FMLA allows workers to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to greet the birth or adoption of a child or to tend to a personal or family […]

Catholic Labor Network Annual Conference

On Saturday Jan. 28, the Catholic Labor Network was able to hold its first Annual Conference since COVID struck. Dozens of workers, clergy and lay Church leaders came together to reflect on the events of 2022 and lift up Catholic Social Teaching on labor and work. The event was held in conjunction with the Catholic […]

Nurses Union Fighting to Improve Patient Care Nationwide

Ordinarily when we think of labor unions and their activity, we focus on their ability to secure better wages and benefits for their members. This is a critically important function of collective bargaining but hardly exhausts what unions do. Workers generally want to do their jobs well – indeed they are often more concerned about […]

Breakthrough for Immigrant Workers

This month witnessed a breakthrough for labor law enforcement, one that specifically addresses the exploitation of immigrant workers. On January 13, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a guidance document on worksite immigration enforcement. The guidance describes how DHS, on a case-by-case basis, will temporarily forgo deportation proceedings against witnesses in important labor and […]

Pope Benedict XVI, Friend of Labor?

Born Joseph Ratzinger, the man who would become Pope Benedict XVI first came to the world’s attention as an insightful theologian at Vatican II. He would become more widely known as head of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) under Pope St. John Paul II, and was elected his successor in […]

Arbitration, Unions and Catholic Social Teaching

A guest contribution from Catholic Labor Network member Michael Loconto. Michael teaches arbitration to union staff and officers at the Boston Labor Guild. In the contentious world of labor relations, disagreements between workers and employers are frequent.  Collective bargaining agreements offer methods of self-help to the parties: grievance processes compel management and labor to meet […]


Pope Francis recently addressed members of the CGIL — Italy’s version of the AFL-CIO — about labor unions, worker justice and other themes. The English version of the Holy Father’s remarks comes courtesy of Google Translate. Dear brothers and sisters, good morning! I welcome you and thank the Secretary-General for his words. This meeting with […]

Ending 2022 with Wins for Workers

The year 2022 has ended with some important wins for workers. Last week we noted in this space how, after years of effort, domestic workers in the US capital won a bill of rights in a unanimous vote by the DC City Council. This week we mark three more important developments over the Christmas season. […]