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Published: Friday, 8/9/2013

Business Brief

1.3M-member UFCW rejoins AFL-CIO unions

WASHINGTON — The United Food and Commercial Workers union is rejoining the AFL-CIO, giving the labor federation more power and resources to help revitalize the union movement.

The move comes eight years after UFCW and six other unions left the AFL-CIO in a dispute that reduced the federation’s clout and took away millions in dues from its budget. The breakaway unions formed a rival federation called Change to Win after complaining the AFL-CIO wasn’t doing enough to halt steep membership declines.

UFCW President Joe Hansen said greater labor unity is needed to fend off efforts to weaken union membership and influence.

The UFCW has 1.3 million members in the retail, meat-packing, and food-processing industries. It will become the AFL-CIO’s largest private-sector union, giving the federation about 13.3 million members.

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