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This essay discusses the 2004 merger between UNITE, a clothing workers’ union, and HERE, the hotel and restaurant workers union. Many labor scholars and union proponents believed that this merger would revive a dormant US labor movement and lead to great success in union organizing. Although much was expected, there was very little accomplished by this merger. While union mergers can either be amalgamations or absorptions, the UNITE-HERE merger took the former form. Although successful amalgamations usually occur when the two unions share a common jurisdiction, additional problems occur when the unions are dissimilar in size and type of members. The UNITE-HERE merger displayed none of these three above-mentioned characteristics. This essay also discusses issues of the centralization/decentralization of union mergers, the negotiation and promotion of such combinations, local union and national union mergers while concluding with a discussion of whether union mergers are an appropriate strategy for dealing with a struggling US labor movement early in the twenty-first century.
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- Union Mergers; Some Questions Raised by a “Disorderly Breakup”
- Springer US
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