We are keeping our eye on Right to Work efforts being pushed in the Oregon statehouse.
The Oregonian Editorial Board gives a good summation of how Right to Work laws divide paying bargaining unit employees and those who benefit under a free ridership program, and how workers first amendment rights can be protected under the Constitution.
Workers don’t win in states that have enacted Right to Work laws, earning almost $1,500 less than workers in states without Right to Work laws.
These laws make families and communities less stable because workers’ wages become stagnant. Right to Work eliminates any good faith efforts between employers and workers because it tips all the power to employers in negotiations and wages.
Our opponents are well financed and communicate misinformation using sophisticated marketing efforts. Still, public employees are putting up a good fight against Right to Work laws across the country because they have seen the consequences these laws have had in states like West Virginia, Michigan and Indiana, to name a few. Right to Work has not boosted these states’ economies by bringing thousands of jobs as promised.
In Wisconsin, workers have learned that elections have serious consequences. Governor Scott Walker signed legislation making Wisconsin the 25th state to enact Right to Work in 2015. A judge has upheld a decision to block Right to Work in the state, deeming it unconstitutional and arguing that the harm to unions that must represent non-dues-paying employees outweighs the harm to those employeesrequired to pay dues for representation. Our opponents in Wisconsin are trying every sneaky maneuver to continue their war on workers. Workers must continue to stand up to these well-coordinated union-busting tactics.
As most statehouses wind down activity for this session, make sure your local stays vigilant against any harmful legislation that threatens to diminish your voice in the negotiation process.