Richard Trumka was a champion for workers’ rights: Passing the PRO Act was one of his top priorities

The labor movement lost a giant last week. Richard Trumka was a champion for workers’ rights and a passionate leader of the labor movement. In addition to serving as President of the AFL-CIO, Trumka served as Chairman of EPI’s board of directors since 2012. Under President Trumka’s leadership, EPI and AFL-CIO have shared an unwavering commitment to advancing workers’ rights and strengthening unions.

For President Trumka, “the next frontier” for U.S. workers was the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act. Passing the PRO Act would restore workers’ ability to organize with their co-workers and would allow them to negotiate for better pay, benefits, and fairness on the job. Passing the PRO Act would also promote greater racial economic justice because unions and collective bargaining help shrink the Black–white wage gap.

Every day, corporations openly bust unions and retaliate against working people without consequence. President Trumka spent his career fighting these attacks on working people’s right to organize and collectively bargain. We need meaningful policy changes to restore a fair balance of power between workers and employers. That is why Congress must pass the PRO Act.

As President Trumka said on June 29, “the single best agent for change is the PRO Act.” We at EPI will honor his memory by continuing to advance policies like the PRO Act that are critical to workers and a fair economy.