94.7% of the 38 construction workers who died on the job in New York State in 2016 were non unionized. In New York City 93.8% of them were non unionized. These number speak for themselves. The strength of the unions and labor movement has been on the decline for years and suffered another severe blow when the US Supreme Court barred public-employee contracts from requiring workers to pay union dues. Unions not only protect workers’ income but also workers health.
A new study analyzed occupational fatalities from 1992 to 2016 and found that 7,300 workplace fatalities could have been avoided if union membership had not been undercut by right to work laws. The author of the study, Michael Zorobod, is a a PhD candidate at Harvard University’s Institute for Quantitative Social Sciences. Zorobod demonstrated that the uptick in workplace fatalities that started in 2013 is correlated to the increased number of States who adopted right to work laws. In 2000, right to work laws were statutes in 20 States. Now they are statues in 28 States.
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