Jessey Drewsen, 25, lives near the H Street Wal-Mart in Washington, D.C. She says she doesn't like the store, but that she goes there for cheap supplies like pens. Emily Jan/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Emily Jan/NPR

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker became a Republican political star by taking on his state's public employee unions. This week he signed a bill that would weaken private-sector unions. Cliff Owen/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Cliff Owen/AP

Hundreds of union members rally outside the Capitol in Madison on Tuesday to oppose a Republican-led measure that would make Wisconsin a right-to-work state. Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Reuters/Landov

More than $1 billion worth of cargo passes through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach every day. Labor disputes have stalled operations for weeks now, and ships have been anchored for days. Daniel Hajek/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Daniel Hajek/NPR

A few trucks move along the docks at the Port of Los Angeles on Thursday. Seaports in major West Coast cities that normally are abuzz with the sound of commerce are falling unusually quiet due to an ongoing labor dispute. Nick Ut/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Nick Ut/AP

Fast-food workers in Los Angeles march in August 2013 to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Similar protests around the country have been organized by labor unions. Nick Ut/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Nick Ut/AP

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker spoke about taking on public employee unions, and the protests that followed, at a recent candidates forum in Iowa. He said what people may not know is that protesters — as many as 1,000 of them — showed up outside his home while his family was there. He says he also received death threats. Scott Olson/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Scott Olson/Getty Images

Fieldale Farms in Gainesville, Ga., says it can't keep enough workers to meet demand for its poultry products, despite paying $16 per hour plus benefits. Jim Zarroli/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Jim Zarroli/NPR

Farm workera at Lipman Produce load tomatoes on a truck on Jan. 16, 2014 in Naples, Fla. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. joined an initiative that will require its Florida tomato suppliers to increase farm worker pay and protect workers from forced labor and sexual assault, among other things. Wilfredo Lee/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Wilfredo Lee/AP

Nancy Becker, an Amazon employee in Bad Hersfeld, Germany, speaks at a protest rally outside the company's headquarters in Seattle in December. Ted S. Warren/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Ted S. Warren/AP

A worker unveils advertisement for future productions at the Metropolitan Opera at Lincoln Center in New York City. The Metropolitan Opera's general manager Peter Gelb has threatened a lockout if there is no an agreement with unions to that represent musicians, stagehands and other employees. John Moore/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption John Moore/Getty Images

Picketers supporting independent truck drivers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach stand outside a container terminal. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Kirk Siegler/NPR

Some of this season's Comice pear harvest is rotting in Pacific Northwest orchards because there aren't enough workers to pick it. Deena Prichep/for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Deena Prichep/for NPR

A protester outside a Trader Joe's in Washington, D.C. The Coalition of Immokalee Workers, which organized the protest, says Trader Joe's has refused to meet standards set by leaders of the fast-food and foodservice industries for a more humane tomato supply chain. Claudia Saenz/Student/Farmworker Alliance hide caption

itoggle caption Claudia Saenz/Student/Farmworker Alliance

Construction equipment sits idle in front of the half-completed new control tower at Oakland International Airport. Thousands of construction workers on aviation projects have stopped work, as a standoff over funding of the FAA continues. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Justin Sullivan/Getty Images