Strength in Numbers: Talking Labor with AFSCME President Lee Saunders


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When the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its decision in Janus v. American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) last summer, some predicted it would be a nail in the coffin for labor unions. But Lee Saunders, the president of AFSCME—the largest trade union for public sector employees—joined the pod this week to tell us that the state of labor unions is, in fact, strong. Despite constant attacks from wealthy special interests working to lower wages for working people and decimate public sector unions, unions have defied their expectations and are enjoying a bout of popularity not seen in years among Americans. The son of a union member in Cleveland, Ohio, Saunders discusses with Ed and Daniella the challenges unions have faced to their viability and membership over the past decade, as well as about the hopeful future of unions with younger generations embracing the power of collective bargaining.

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