In recent decades, the South has come to occupy an increasingly important position within the US economy, as the distribution of employment growth and decline, as well as the conditions under which workers are employed, has undergone profound and lasting changes... To be sure, increased job opportunities are sorely needed across the region. But the character of job growth often presents its own challenges, as jobseekers must accept new, “flexible” jobs at low pay.
— New Southern Strategies: Employment, Workers’ Rights and the Prospects for Regional Resurgence
Focusing on Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee, this report assesses a range of economic indicators affecting quality of life in the South, examines some of the corporate strategies that are driving these changes, and presents some of the efforts underway in the region to improve economic opportunity through labor organizing and strengthening workers’ rights.
This report does not attempt to provide an exhaustive inventory of current labor rights struggles. Rather, it identifies examples of innovative strategies and campaigns, and sets these against key economic indicators and trends in economic restructuring.
Read more in New Southern Strategies: Employment, Workers’ Rights and the Prospects for Regional Resurgence by Nik Theodore, University of Illinois at Chicago, for NFG's Funders for a Just Economy.
Shannon Reaze of Jobs with Justice describes how the coalition is pushing forward the labor movement and fighting to make systemic change sustainable in the South and across the country. Jobs with Justice focuses on organizing campaigns rooted in the community with labor at the center.