‘Strong Unions Make Strong Democracies’

Houcine Abassi, secretary general of the Tunisian General Labor Union (Union Générale Tunisienne du Travail, UGTT), which shares this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, and AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, write today in The Guardian that “awarding the Nobel Prize to an organization led by the Tunisian labor movement was a recognition of the essential and potentially transformative role of labor in all of our nations.”

“Strong unions make strong democracies,” they continue. “It sounds simplistic, but each of us have experienced this fundamental premise in our nations. As labor leaders in the United States and Tunisia respectively, we know full well that when workers come together for a voice on the job, it boosts the economy, eases social unrest and creates the conditions for peace, prosperity and the protection of rights.

To be sure, we come from very different countries, each with its own set of economic and political challenges. But we have seen the healing power of unions firsthand.”

Read their full op-ed here.