Is America Failing its Workers? A US Report Card on Labor Rights

Ayah Abdelwahab, K. Chad Clay, International Affairs, University of Georgia, 202 Herty Drive 30602

To what extent has the United States of America implemented changes to better meet its obligations to workers' in response to its Universal Periodic Review conducted in 2015? Every five years, the United States goes up for review by the UN Human Rights Council. The purpose of the UPR process is to assess a country’s record of violating human rights. In allowing countries to provide recommendations on the improvements needed within the country under review, and providing the country under review with a means to declare how it will implement change, the UPR is a key tool in the advancement of human rights. As the US is up for Universal Periodic Review in 2020, it is important to understand how US respect for workers’ rights has shifted since 2015. Further, the rights to collectively bargain and associate are among the fundamental rights guaranteed for workers in international law. However, violations of these rights have continued in the US with the implementation of the right to work laws. Little research has examined the potential shift in respect for workers' rights over the past five years and the forms in which these changes have taken shape (i.e. laws, policies, violations by private entities, etc.). To evaluate this potential change, I use a longitudinal study of these rights from the 2015 UPR and the impending 2020 UPR. Specifically, I review state and federal laws, judicial rulings, and reports from non-governmental organizations to assess changes in respect for the rights to collectively bargain and associate. This analysis will identify current violations of workers' rights in the U.S. and charts a path for greater respect for workers' rights. 

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Ayah Abdelwahab

Institution: University of Georgia

Type: Poster

Subject: Political Science

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 10
Date/Time: Wed 1:30pm-2:30pm
Session Number: 6513