So-called “Right-to-Work” has dangerous side-effects

Hidden behind the name “Right-to-Work” are some serious problems.

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation’s “Kaiser State Health Facts” compiled by the Urban Institute and Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured estimates based on the Census reveal alarming facts about health care coverage. Currently 9.6% of Minnesotans do not have health insurance, compared to 16.6% uninsured in states that have enacted various “Right-to-Work” statutes.

So-called “Right to Work” is, of course, meant to mislead voters, and perhaps even politicians. Everybody has a right to work. Nobody is ever forced to join a union, let alone to pay dues. Labor law already requires unions to represent non-members who seek redress for grievances, etc. The name sounds great; the reality is a little more disturbing.

“In our glorious fight for civil rights, we must guard against being fooled by false slogans, such as ‘right to work.’  It is a law to rob us of our civil rights and job rights.  Its purpose is to destroy labor unions and the freedom of collective bargaining by which unions have improved wages and working conditions of everyone…

Wherever these laws have been passed, wages are lower, job opportunities are fewer and there are no civil rights. We do not intend to let them do this to us. We demand this fraud be stopped. Our weapon is our vote.”

~Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
speaking about so-called Right-to-Work laws in 1961

Not paying union dues does sound tempting at first: it’s better than a free lunch, right? What if I told you unemployment is lower in Minnesota than in these so-called “Right-to-Work” states? It is. You might think that means we’re earning less, since more Minnesotans are employed, driving down demand for skilled workers – right?

There’s no such thing as a free lunch.

In fact, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, (American Community Survey 2008. Table B20017,) Minnesotans earn substantially more than people in states “protected” by this mis-named “right to work” nonsense. Median annual Minnesota personal income is $31,445. Personal income drops to $26,381 in anti-middle class “Right to Work” states.

Don't buy Right-to-Work; it's a lie!

Still not convinced?

The players of the NFL understand exactly what’s at stake for workers. They oppose these so-called “Right-to-Work” changes, because they know that it was unions that earned us reasonable work hours, fair pay, and benefits such as health care, which obviously is threatened if special interests roll back what made America great: the opportunity for middle-class workers to support their families.
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About local49

IUOE Local 49 was formed in 1927. Today we are more than 13,000 men and women in Minnesota, North and South Dakota with contracts for highway/heavy and building contractors, well drillers, equipment repair shops, welding shops, sand and gravel suppliers, counties, municipalities, hospitals, school districts, cemeteries, and more.

Posted on February 3, 2012, in benefits, Jobs, MN politics, union and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Here’s some of what the NFL players had to say:

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Quarterbacks Jay Cutler of the Chicago Bears and Rex Grossman of the Washington Redskins are among six NFL players urging Indiana lawmakers to oppose right-to-work legislation.

    Cutler, from Santa Claus, Ind., and Grossman, from Bloomington, joined New Orleans’ Courtney Roby, Pittsburgh’s Trai Essex, St. Louis’ Mark Clayton and San Diego’s Kris Dielman in sending letters to Indiana House members Monday. Days earlier, the NFL Players Association came out against the measure that would ban private contracts that require workers to pay union fees for representation.

    Cutler called it a “political ploy” against workers.

    NFL players understand exactly what’s at stake for workers. They oppose these so-called “Right-to-Work” laws fervently. It was one of the first topics raised at the NFLPA’s Groundhog Day news conference leading up to this year’s Superbowl.

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