Aug 23, 2023 - Economy

Hundreds of thousands of workers were out on strike in July

Data: Cornell-ILR Labor Action Tracker; Chart: Axios Visuals

The summer of strikes is well underway, and it could herald a big autumn for strikes, too.

Driving the news: About 205,500 workers were on strike in July, per a new tally from the Labor Action Tracker managed by Cornell's School of Industrial and Labor Relations.

  • That's the highest level since Cornell started tracking work stoppages in 2021.

The big picture: The high number is largely due to the 160,000 actors and writers out on the picket lines now.

  • And the number could get much larger in the coming months if 146,000 UAW members go out on strike.
  • There's also a looming possibility of a strike by 85,000 health care workers employed by California-based Kaiser Permanente — the union representing the system's employees is likely to vote soon on whether or not to authorize a strike.

By the numbers: The industry with the most strikes overall is accommodation and food services, with 18 different strikes in July including at Starbucks and some fast-food outlets.

Reality check: The number of workers on strike is still not as high as back in 2018 and 2019, and nowhere near the levels seen back in the 20th century, said Johnnie Kallas, who runs Cornell's labor tracker.

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