A Workers' Lobby to Provide Portable Benefits

39 Pages Posted: 28 Mar 2003 Last revised: 1 Nov 2010

See all articles by Joni Hersch

Joni Hersch

Vanderbilt University - Law School; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management; Vanderbilt University - College of Arts and Science - Department of Economics

Date Written: March 2003

Abstract

How can workers have a voice in the face of declining unionization and rising nontraditional career paths? To demonstrate how a new labor market institution can emerge, I develop a model of fundraising by a workers' organization in which the founder must allocate resources between the provision of public goods, which attracts foundation grants, and the provision of private goods, which attracts individual members. My case study for analyzing the performance of the model is Working Today, a new organization founded with the objectives of representing all workers and shifting employment rights from the current employer-based regime to one that assigns rights to individuals. Working Today has evolved from an organization funded by foundation grants that attempted to represent all workers, to primarily serving as an intermediary to provide group health insurance for independent workers. In order to examine the market for health insurance supplied by an organization such as Working Today, I provide statistics on the insurance coverage status and demographic characteristics of non-standard workers and traditional employees.

Suggested Citation

Hersch, Joni, A Workers' Lobby to Provide Portable Benefits (March 2003). NBER Working Paper No. w9591, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=391127

Joni Hersch (Contact Author)

Vanderbilt University - Law School ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://law.vanderbilt.edu/go/phdlawecon

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

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Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management

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Vanderbilt University - College of Arts and Science - Department of Economics

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