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The declining incidence of strikes in the United States and its possible explanation

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  1. Abstract.
  2. Post-war labour situation.
  3. Decline in the incidence of strikes in the last 30 years.
  4. The PATCO Strike: The federal anti-union manifestation.
  5. Permanent replacement workers.
    1. Automation.
    2. Promotion.
  6. Conclusion.

The declining incidence of strikes in the United States has plummeted dramatically over the last fifty years. Workers perceive one arsenal that they reserve for the fiercest labour battles: strike. Yet, this arsenal may forever be unutilized or at least be kept to a minimum at the expense of risking termination. Nowadays, strikes are least resorted to by labour unions because it does not achieve the result that the workforce anticipates. Moreover, the federal government in the recent decades have shown lukewarm support towards workers' causes. It appears that management seemed to have the upper hand in the formulation of employment policies. Other factors can be attributed to its decline: poor government policies on labour, the precedence of the PATCO strike, the introduction of permanent replacement workers, automation and promotion. These shall be discussed consequentially in this paper.

[...] keep operating in a strike, more and more companies have been deploying a weapon they long shunned -hiring permanent replacements for workers who are on the picket lines (Kilborn 1990).? Peter Kilborn (1990) of The New York Times said that to keep operating in a strike, more and more companies have been deploying a weapon they long shunned -hiring permanent replacements for workers who are on the picket lines. He mentioned that the permanent replacements, often recruited from the ranks of the unemployed or from low-paid employees of other businesses, are a variation on the temporary substitutes vilified by trade unionists as ''scabs'' or ''strikebreakers'' but nevertheless regarded as a part of management's legitimate arsenal. [...]


[...] Conclusion The decline of strike incidents in the United States reflects a downhill on labour activism that hurt the workforce as well as little improvements in the way management has treated the employees over the decades. The decline in strike incidents reveals that political considerations went adverse to the employees, especially during the Reagan administration. Policies were formulated to discourage workers from using their greatest weapon to demand better terms of employment?the strike?yet the government has not provided any alternative for employees to secure better terms. [...]


[...] The PATCO Strike: The Federal Anti-Union Manifestation Another reason for the decline in incidence of strikes was the disregard that Reagan administration did to the members of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO). It was almost 27 years ago, since the PATCO incident transpired. Writer Barry Grey (2006) detailed the incident: On this day 25 years ago, August members of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO) went on strike in a contract dispute with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to demand shorter hours, increased staffing and improved wages. [...]

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