DCist | Alexandria Firefighter Union Wins Historic Collective Bargaining Vote
KI Executive Director, Joe McCartin speaks to DCist about a historic win for labor in Northern Virginia as firefighters in Alexandria gain collective bargaining rights.
“It’s a big move. It’s a very significant win for organized labor after so many years of being excluded from public sector bargaining in Virginia. Not only to win a vote but to win it by such a lopsided margin is a really big development and I think positions other unions, especially in Northern Virginia, to make similar breakthroughs in the months ahead.”
“What these laws do is create the problem of a free rider, where you can benefit from the union’s activity but you don’t have to pay for it, and that almost universally discourages a strong union.”
“I think there’s a mood that’s palpable amongst workers: from Starbucks workers, to Amazon workers, to the first responders in Alexandria, they’re seeing that being organized makes sense and we’re seeing much more of an impulse towards that in the past year or so. I think these things are not unconnected.”