"The Common Enemy Is the Boss and the Inmate": Police and Prison Guard Unions in New York in the 1970s-1980s

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2011


The essay examines the activities of police and prison guard unions in New York State in the 1970s and 1980s. The author explains how these two groups avoided public employment budget cuts associated with the rise of neoliberalism. The ways in which prison guard activism affected prison reform in New York are detailed as well. The author also examines how police involvement in public employee labor movements alienated working-class minorities.