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School of Labor and Employment Relations University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Alison Dickson


Labor Education Program (Chicago)
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815 W. Van Buren, Suite 110, Chicago, IL 60607


MUPP, Urban Planning and Policy, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2010
BA, International Affairs, George Washington University, 2002

Research Interests

Alison is an economic researcher focused on issues affecting U.S. workers, especially low-wage workers, families and communities. She is particularity interested in policy issues pertaining to low-wage labor markets including minimum wages, paid sick leave, fair scheduling legislation and efforts to combat wage theft.


Alison directs and teaches for the Worker Rights Project, a LEP initiative that provides bilingual (Spanish-English) workers’ rights training for low-wage workers. In collaboration with the Chicago Jobs Council (CJC), Alison also teaches train-the-trainer courses for frontline providers of workforce development programs in the Chicagoland area.

In 2015, Alison and CJC joined with staff from the Illinois Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety Education and Research Center of the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago to develop the Workers’ Rights for Workforce Development curriculum. A second edition of the curriculum was published in 2017 and a third edition is currently being developed. This work serves as the first curriculum ever developed in the U.S. that is entirely focused on connecting workers’ rights education to workforce development programming. Request a free copy of the curriculum here: