How Right-to-Work Laws Make Inequality Worse

Monday, May 21, 2018
The Street

"Some huge amount of the productivity gains over the last 30 years in the United States have gone to executives and stockholders, and not to workers," said Professor Robert Korstad with Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy. "That's because workers in major industries where automation has taken place didn't have strong unions that could bargain for them and demand a certain percentage of the productivity gains that have been realized by the employers."

"All of the studies that economists and labor people have been doing over the last decade or so [that] have looked at the relationship between wage stagnation, income inequality and the decline of unionization in the United States have been able to track pretty closely how the reduction in unionization of particularly the private sector has contributed to what's been basically a static wage rate for workers," he continued.

"I think this relationship between unions and greater wage inequality is pretty clear, at least on the downside."

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