Fighting against the exploitation of labor.
Several years into the so-called “gig economy,” we’ve been able to see the good and the bad. At its best, it’s been a system to supplement income on someone’s own schedule. At its worst, it’s a permission structure to strip away labor protections while glorifying underemployment. Any honest attempt to build an economy that works for everyone will require addressing the realities people face when splicing together their living wage. Brian understands these realities because he actively lived them as a freelancer for most of his adult life, sometimes just surviving off the tips from various side gigs. As long as most of our elected leaders are detached from the day-to-day struggles of our modern economy, not only will it never be fixed, it’ll continue to be dismissed as not even being a problem.
Here’s where we can start:
- Fight against “right-to-work laws” that erode the underlying structures that make unions possible.
- Strengthen the right for workers to organize and go on strike.
- End the loopholes that companies exploit to get out of honoring existing union contracts.
- Support a Federal minimum wage of $15/hour.
- Pass legislation to require labor representation on corporate boards of directors.
Legal precedents are being set right now that allow these companies to undermine the rights of the working class in the guise of “freedom,” and those rulings will find their way being used against labor unions that are already under siege. When people dare to stand up for their rights, companies are all too comfortable banding together to suppress all voices of dissent.
While everyone is encouraged to start their own companies and contribute to our economy, they cannot be allowed to do so at the exploitation of labor. Yet, the corporate elite has been very successful in convincing people that unions are disastrous for the individual worker, despite that worker’s increased pay, safety protections, and negotiated benefits. If unions truly didn’t work, corporations wouldn’t be trying so hard to destroy them.
America is in the middle of a new Gilded Age. One where business interests are raking in record-breaking profits while convincing everyone else to work for near all-time low wages. Our elected leaders have decided that reining them in is too much work, and have allowed them to become almost-unregulated sovereign nations that dictate our daily lives, while collecting campaign checks for the service. It’s time to say “enough!”
The American government is supposed to stand up for everyone, especially those who feel crushed under the thumb of tyranny, and just because it’s corporate-driven, doesn’t make it any less oppressive. Organizing is in the lifeblood of what the United States is about. Brian stands with those who stand with labor.