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- PublicationMobilising societal power: Understanding public support for nursing strikes(Wiley, 2022-03)Framing is regarded as the primary mechanism through which unions generate societal power. This article examines the relationship between societal power and framing in a significant case study- a nursing strike which successfully challenged austerity wages in Ireland. Through analysis of messages of support for the strike in newspapers and on Twitter, the sources of societal power in the conflict are identified. The findings indicate that the framing strategies unions adopt and public acceptance of these strategies depend on historical and sectoral factors. In the instant case, nurses benefitted from increased societal support for the broader labour movement and recent waves of protest.
Scopus© Citations 4 112
- PublicationUsing the Unions: Healthcare Struggles in Italy and Spain between Trade Unionism and Self-OrganizationThe healthcare sector has been profoundly impacted by global neoliberal restructuring which, in turn, has provoked campaigns of resistance from workers and users. Scholars' investigations of this resistance to have focused on unions' struggles in the workplace, user campaigns relating to access as well as instances of self-organized healthcare provision. This paper adopts a new focus – self-organized groups of healthcare workers and users which strategically use union resources. Our findings show how these groups, while emerging independently of unions and often framing unions critically, nonetheless rely on unions both in workplace-related struggles and campaigns regarding access to services. We identify three main purposes for which these groups use unions – expertise, institutional and legal resources, and publicity – and argue that these strategic uses are related to the phase of demobilisation in which social movements find themselves. As well as providing new insights into a distinctive feature of organizing within the healthcare sector, our research contributes to the literature on workers' self-organization and to labour revitalization studies by showing how and why self-organization and trade unionism interact.