More Than 100K Workers in Various Industries Threaten Strikes
In SummaryThousands of workers in the country are ready to strike, which could lead to some of the largest worker walkouts in modern history.
More than 100,000 unionized workers from various industries across the country are threatening to go on strike to get higher pay and better work conditions.
According to The Hill, the employees are from multiple industries and companies, including Hollywood production, John Deere factory workers and even nurses for Kaiser Permanente. They voted overwhelmingly to authorize strikes and join the picket lines unless they get stronger collective bargaining agreements.
Thousands of workers, from New York hospital employees to Kellogg plant workers in various states, have already been on strike. This wave comes as labor unions gain power and companies continue to struggle to find employees. Unions are using that worker shortage as leverage in their effort to increase wages and better conditions.
For Kaiser Permanente, nearly 24,000 nurses voted almost unanimously on Monday to authorize a strike when contract negotiations stalled. The nurses are protesting pandemic burnout and low staffing levels, and pushing for 4% raises annually and increased hiring. The company has only offered an annual pay increase by 1% over the next three years, and a tiered system for paying employees.
Both the company and the nurses want to avoid a strike as the nation continues to battle with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Kaiser’s senior vice president of human resources released a statement saying, “We ask that our employees reject a call to walk away from the patients who need them. Our priority is to continue to provide our members with high-quality, safe care.”
Employees of farm equipment manufacturer John Deere are expected to walk out on the job on Thursday. More than 10,000 employees are prepared to strike after rejecting a new contract proposal. It included immediate 5-6% raises for most workers, but employees said the pay raises were not enough considering the company is expected to see revenue of $6 billion this year.
Hollywood production workers have already authorized a strike demanding better quality of life in time for meals and sleep in addition to better wages from streaming profits.
According to The Hill, if the strikes are carried out, they could be some of the largest worker walkouts in recent history.