Unions are an integral component of Chelsey’s family history – they protected both her grandma and her dad, and they’re an integral component of the world she’s fighting for now: one that champions both racial and economic justice.

So what’s the tea on unions? Why does it matter that someone is fighting for fairer treatment and protections for you? My dad has been protected by his union for almost 30 years during his career with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. And the union had my Babcia’s (that’s “grandma” in Polish) back when she was experiencing age discrimination and language barriers while working in the Nestle Factory.

Unions also have a place in the Black Lives Matter Movement…

Did you know that there is a deep connection between racial justice and economic justice? For many Black American workers, this connection has historically been forged through strong Unions. Unions have ensured that Black public service workers throughout the United States could earn fair wages and dignity on the job and opened up pathways for economic advancement. In 1968, Dr. King spent his last days marching with Black public service workers in Memphis.

Today, the march for justice and equality continues, and unions are still in the fight and on the front lines. As we continue to educate ourselves during this time it is key that we learn how policies and organizations affect economic justice and civil rights. I’m so glad my family members had their respective Unions to help fight for fair treatment.