After Janus: Teachers’ Unions, Walkouts, and Social Justice Unionism

Natasha M. Strassfeld, Robert N. Strassfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent union-supported teachers’ walkouts and strikes across several U.S. states and cities highlighted union-led and grassroots efforts to amplify teachers’ voices. Yet, the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, Janus v. AFSCME, Council 31, provides a strength test for teachers’ unions and members engaging in social justice/equity work within a post-Janus landscape. This article first explores traditional functions of teachers’ unions. Next, it examines Janus and potential consequences for union participation, teachers’ advocacy, and civil rights. Using a social justice lens, the article discusses how and why unions may need to consider strengthening “social justice unionism” by building on walkouts and strikes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-353
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Educational Reform
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2020


  • educational policy
  • social justice
  • teachers
  • unions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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