World Bank highlights good effects of unions


A new World Bank report says that high unionization rates often lead to less inequality in earnings, less wage discrimination against women and minority workers and improved economic performance.
The book, Unions and Collective Bargaining: Economic Effects in a Global Environment, finds that the positive effects of unionization tend to be greater in countries with highly coordinated collective bargaining than in countries where the labour movement is more fragmented.
The study is based on a survey of more than a thousand studies on the economic effects of unions and collective bargaining.
"Although it comes as no surprise to the ICFTU, this public acknowledgement by the World Bank, backed by in-depth research is welcome," said ICFTU general secretary Guy Ryder, "The bank must now go on to translate these important findings into policy, which may involve a significant shift in its organizational culture.
"In contrast to the worker-friendly statements at the global level, country-level bank staff still routinely advise governments to, in effect, violate the core labour standards by making access to unionization and collective bargaining more difficult."

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