Labor's Paradox: The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO

Labor's Paradox: The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO

Labor's Paradox: The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO

Labor's Paradox: The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO

Excerpt

This study was originally undertaken for the purpose of exploring the problems of justice and democracy at all levels of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.

The union is characterized by a structure that contains a wide range of contrasts. Some locals, or groups of locals that are called councils, have complete autonomy when it comes to exercising the authority that lies within their jurisdiction. Other combinations of locals, either by agreement or tradition, provide that the international union shall supervise their staffs or appoint representatives and organizers to carry on their work. A few, usually in the early stages of organization, are completely dependent on the national union for leadership, funds, and staff. Each local, regardless of its stage of development, contains spokesmen who will insist on autonomy, but each spokesman defines autonomy in his own way.

AFSCME locals deal with a wide range of sovereign employers and represent varying degrees of organizational effectiveness. The employer with whom the union representatives must deal may be anyone in more than 100,000 local government . . .

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