Live Longer, Be Union: What’s in store for the future?


    Pictured on the cover of Voice of Action are my nieces, Aviana and Abigail, along with their friend hailey. Like other children their age, they look ahead to lives of fulfilled dreams and adventure.

    If trends of the the past 200 years continue, they can expect plenty of time to make those dreams and adventures come true.

    Researchers at the University of Southern Denmark studied the life spans of past generations and evaluated the current accelerating pace of developments in medicine.

    Their conclusion: many, if not most, of the babies born since 2000 in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the United States will live to be 100 years old or more.

    This is good news for me, because I have plans to attend America’s tricentennial celebrations in 2076. I've already put it on my calendar. At that time I will be 114, which all of a sudden doesn’t look too far out of reach!

  Staggering consequences

    If the danish researchers are anywhere close to accuracy in their forecast, the consequences for our society will be staggering. Imagine the things we could accomplish if our working careers were followed by several decades of learning, leisure, volunteerism and travel!

    Union members already enjoy a superior standard of health care that undoubtedly contributes to their longevity. Studies regularly show that life spans are shortest in states where the percentages of union households are lowest. That is certainly not a coincidence.

    Advancements in health care and unions are the driving force behind widespread availability of health care to ordinary people. The more union members there are, the longer we can expect our lifespans to become.

    Unions will continue to perform an essential role in the lives of Aviana, Abigail, Hailey and other citizens of the future. As a result, they will be happier, healthier and more prosperous than they would be if they didn’t have unions.

    You may have seen the bumper sticker that says “Live Better, Work union.” Soon I expect there will be an alternative version that says “Live Longer, Be union.”

    My nieces might want to put one of those on their hovercrafts — a hundred years from now.

    Solidarity Works!