Tag Archives: labor

“Right to Work”

20 Mar

chi-fight-for-15-20130424Right now unions are under attack. Wisconsin just signed the “Right to Work” Act. There are 25 “right to work” states. Illinois’ new Governor Bruce Rauner is attempting to make Illinois 26.

“Despite its misleading name, this type of law does not guarantee anyone a job and it does not protect against unfair firing.  By undermining unions, so-called ‘Right to Work’ laws would weaken the best job security protections workers have – the union contract.

A ‘right to work’ law is a state law that stops employers and employees from negotiating an agreement – also known as a union security clause – that requires all workers who receive the benefits of a collective bargaining agreement to pay their share of the costs of representing them.  Right to Work laws say that unions must represent every eligible employee, whether he or she pays dues or not.  In other words, ‘Right to Work’ laws allow workers to pay nothing and still get all the benefits of union membership.

‘Right to Work’ laws aren’t fair to dues-paying members.  If a worker who is represented by a union and doesn’t pay dues is fired illegally, the union must use its time and money to defend him or her, even if that requires going through a costly, time-consuming legal process.  Since the union represents everyone, everyone benefits, so everyone should share in the costs of providing these services.  Amazingly, nonmembers who are represented by a union can even sue the union if they think it has not represented them well enough!” AFL-CIO

So why are unions even needed? “CEOs Earn 331 Times As Much As Average Workers, 774 Times As Much As Minimum Wage Earners. With CEO compensation analysis season in full swing, the AFL-CIO released data this morning stating that American CEOs in 2013 earned an average of $11.7 million–an eye-popping 331 times the average worker’s $35,293.”Apr 15, 2014 Forbes Magazine.

In the meantime minimum wage workers are fighting for a $15 minimum wage. Unions have supported this “Fight for Fifteen.” No longer are the jobs at McDonalds and other minimum wage jobs for students trying to pick up a few bucks. They are for all of those people who have lost jobs during the recession and because of companies moving their companies overseas for even cheaper labor.

Are these laws really “right to work” or “right to exploit.” Remember that they also called the MX nuclear missile the “Peacekeeper.”

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