Worker Centers Collecting Federal Funds

This summer, worker centers gained public notoriety with staged strikes at fast-food restaurants and Wal-Mart. Their effectiveness in gaining media attention has not been lost on labor unions, as the likes of SEIU, UFCW, UNITE-HERE and other unions are worker centers’ primary benefactors.

Big Labor invests in worker centers due to their non-profit or education organization status. As such, federal labor law does not apply to worker centers. This allows groups like Fast-Food Forward or OUR Wal-Mart to engage in tactics that unions cannot.

Specifically, workers centers may protest/picket an employer for over 30 days without calling for a union election and bypass union financial transparency standards. In addition, worker centers can demand concessions from employers without gaining representation over employees.

While worker centers may be a wise investment for labor unions, it is not for taxpayers. These supposed non-profit worker centers have received millions of dollars in taxpayer funds.

Various federal agencies award worker centers grants, with the most generous being the Department of Labor.

Below is a list of worker centers that have been awarded federal grants, agency and total amount:

See lists of worker centers here, here, and here.

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