01/12/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

The Economic Recovery Program Our Nation Needs

With news that unemployment claims have reached a 26-year high and Congress" continuing failure to reach a compromise to save millions of jobs and America's auto industry - the need for a strong economic recovery program couldn't be greater. We can no longer stand by and watch our economy collapse. After spending billions to bailout Wall Street, it's time to stop blaming workers for bad boardroom decisions and start finding ways to help working families - not just CEOs -- that are struggling in these tough economic times.

The Employee Free Choice Act is the solution to kick-starting our nation's economy, and must be an essential component of any economic recovery program.

Just yesterday, President-elect Obama once again affirmed his support of the legislation, stating "I want to strengthen the union movement in this country and put an end to the kinds of barriers and roadblocks that are in the way of workers legitimately coming together in order to form a union and bargain collectively.'' President-elect Obama has repeatedly expressed his commitment to giving the highest priority to policies and programs that promote sustainable, long-term economic growth - such as the Employee Free Choice Act.

For working families, economic recovery and economic growth starts at work.
All Americans stand to benefit through the gains this legislation will bring to our nation's unbalanced, staggering economic state. With better wages and financial stability, we can amplify worker purchasing power, and thus stimulate our nation's economy.

Workers in unions earn 30 percent higher wages, are 59 percent more likely to have employer-based health coverage, and four times more likely to have pension benefits. Passage of the Employee Free Choice Act will help end the wage gap, reform our health care system and provide retirement security for America's hard working men and women.

Americans are facing the worst economic calamity since the Great Depression. Workers are losing because of the upside-down economics of the past three decades. Government policies and unrestrained corporate power concentrated all the income and wealth to the top; increased worker productivity went into profits instead of paychecks; and now declining family income and stagnant real wages underlie today's economic crisis.

More than ever before, we need to make sure workers earn the wages and have the benefits they need and deserve so we can get our economy back on the path of prosperity.

The seven unions and six million members of Change to Win look forward to working with the new administration and Congress to act quickly to pass the Employee Free Choice Act to restore our economy, rebuild the middle class and renew the American Dream.