In the past, the traditional question posed by unions was: "which side are you on?"--presenting a clear choice between labor and capital. As membership and bargaining power fall, however, unions are asserting their rights as shareholders to influence corporate decision making outside the conventional labor law framework. Because the National Labor Relations Act does not adequately protect workers' rights, unions have devised innovative methods as shareholders to exercise unprecedented power over managers. In only a few years, labor-shareholders have become highly visible players in the institutional shareholder movement. As a group, labor-shareholders submit one of the largest numbers of shareholder resolutions. Even more significantly, they have one of the highest success rates in obtaining passage of their proposals.
Marleen A. O'Connor,
Organized Labor as Shareholder Activist: Building Coalitions to Promote Worker Capitalism,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
Available at: http://scholarship.richmond.edu/lawreview/vol31/iss5/4