In the latest attacks on Right to Work, Michigan state senators have introduced two new bills to repeal the controversial legislation. Late last week, Senators Jim Ananich (D-Flint), Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D-Taylor) and Steve Bieda (D-Warren) outlined a plan for repealing the state’s Right to Work laws which were enacted in 2013.
“Michigan workers deserve the freedom and liberty to make decisions that suit their career ambitions without government mandating how they can and cannot associate,” says Sen. Ananich. “They deserve the right to work for more, and that’s what this legislation will do.”
Michigan’s Right to Work legislation, like all legislation of its kind, impacts the power unions have to collect dues and enforce membership. Despite its intent to grow local businesses and competitiveness, studies show Michigan’s wages and employment rates are sharply lagging in comparison to their pro-union neighbors.
If the latest effort is successful, unions will once again be able to require membership for those seeking coverage and benefits.
“Unfortunately, Michigan has been a prime example of Right to Work’s inability to do as it promises,” says Richard Dalton, business manager for the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 18 in Ohio. “It’s time for the state to reverse course and be an example of how recovery from the legislation is possible.”
Right to Work came to Michigan the same way it has for many other states. Despite waves of public opposition, even mass protests at the state capitol, the Republican majority passed and signed it into law in 2012.
The original bill still holds support from many politicians in the state, including Governor Rick Snyder, who originally signed the bill into law.
For many U.S. citizens, Right to Work is a seemingly new issue. A Republican sweep during the 2016 election has resulted in many states beginning talks to adopt the laws. States like Michigan and Missouri, for example, are no strangers to the controversies these anti-union measures have caused.
A collection of bills that target unions’ power, Right to Work allows workers to be non-paying, non-members while still receiving full benefits and coverage from their industry’s union.
While the goal is to free up money for business owners to invest back into the company, that’s rarely the case. Studies show the money remains at the top, causing everything from unemployment and low wages to slow industry growth and hazardous work environments.
“We have seen successes across the country in the battle over Right to Work, but Michigan is a whole new challenge,” says Dalton. “These senators need the support of their party and voters to overturn these unfair laws before any more damage is done.”
For more information on Right to Work in Ohio, visit: http://protectohiosmiddleclass.org
SOURCE: Keep Ohio's Heritage
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