Worker-owned co-ops—An alternative to unions v. ‘right to work’

A hybrid of socialism and capitalism, a workers' co-op offers the best of both and none of the worst. A cooperative corporation is a for-profit company, owned by and run by the workers. In this type of business, each individual, from production worker to top management, gets one vote in major decision-making processes. Co-operative corporations can differ in terms of how a “major decision,” one worthy of group vote, is defined, but some kind of democratic process is at the heart of any cooperative corporation. Co-ops are becoming more popular in this world of economic inequality. As Shaila Dewan reports in her recent New York Time Magazine article, "Who Needs a Boss?" a worker at a co-operative bakery earns $24 an hour (twice the average wage for bakers), receives benefits and has flexible hours.

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