The United States is at a critical juncture. This summer, Congress has a narrow window of opportunity to enact major investments in clean energy and transportation infrastructure to meet the bold vision called for in President Joe Biden’s American Jobs Plan (AJP). It would reinvigorate domestic manufacturing, create and sustain millions of good jobs with strong labor standards, combat persistent racial injustice, and mobilize our country to confront the most pressing issue of our time: climate change.
The renewable energy, energy efficiency, and clean vehicles sectors currently employ roughly 3 million Americans, many of them in rural areas. However, pay and benefits are not currently where they should be. In addition, most utility-scale wind and solar projects currently under construction in the U.S. are non-union – and some of the most recognizable employers in the clean energy sector have publicly opposed employee efforts to unionize. Unions are important because they help workers make a middle-class living – research shows that unionized workers earn significantly higher wages and are more likely than their nonunionized counterparts to receive employer-provided health insurance, have paid leave, and participate in a retirement plan. Unions also help raise pay for women and reduce racial pay and wealth gaps.
The above excerpt was originally published in InsideSources.
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