Labor allies hold off Right to Work in New Mexico

State Democrats defeat the latest GOP efforts with vote along party lines
(PR NewsChannel) / March 7, 2017 / SANTA FE, N.M. 

New_Mexico_State_Capitol_east_entranceA Republican push to enact Right to Work in New Mexico was dead on arrival this week and state workers have local Democrats and dozens of union members to thank for it.

Voting 6-5 along party lines in the House Labor and Economic Development Committee, the lawmakers officially tabled the measure late last week. With the vote, it’s likely the controversial legislation is dead for this year’s 60-day legislative session.

Prior to Saturday’s vote, dozens of union members from all over state and various political backgrounds appeared to testify against the “union-busting” legislation.

Additionally, critics of the measure believe it would lead to lower wages for workers in New Mexico.

“Our workers are better off in New Mexico with better wages,” said House Majority Leader Sheryl William Stapleton (D-Albuquerque).

It’s a sentiment that many labor experts believe could help turn the tide in other battleground states.

“We continue to see Right to Work advocates attempt to push their agenda through negative and misleading information,” says Richard Dalton, business manager for the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 18 in Ohio. “By telling the truth we’re able to expose the dangers of Right to Work and help voters help themselves.”

Opponents of Right to Work efforts contend that the initiative’s true purpose is to kill unions and worker protections. By stripping workers of their rights and freedoms, business owners would be free to lower worker pay, reduce worker benefits, and ignore worker rights.

In fact, the Economic Policy Institute found that workers in Right to Work states earn at least 3.2 percent less on average and are less likely to have employer-sponsored health coverage or pension plans.

“It’s clear that Right to Work isn’t in the best interest of the average worker. By pushing back against the legislation, labor allies can continue to do what’s best for their communities,” said Dalton.

For more information on Right to Work in Ohio, visit: 

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SOURCE:  Keep Ohio's Heritage

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