Federal law currently prohibits employers from refusing to hire workers who don’t belong to a union. However, union bosses negotiate contracts with employers requiring non-union employees to pay union dues of 1% to 2% of those employees’ wages. Of course, those union bosses need those dues if they are to be successful in promoting their political agenda as well as in purloining their back pockets and feathering their nests because the number of union members has been declining for decades.
That helps to explain why those union bosses absolutely dread the “Right to Work” (RTW) movement that’s been popping up across the United States. RTW seeks to allow employees to work without having to pay union dues. It also prohibits employees from being fired for refusing to pay those dues.
The logic of the RTW movement is pretty straightforward and can be summed up with this question: With unions engaging in political campaigning and providing financial support to a variety of causes that employees may not agree with, why should those employees be compelled to support unions as a condition of employment?
Two benefits associated with RTW:
- It attracts investment, as firms that are not unionized have higher profits, greater investment and create more jobs.
- It encourages local governments in non-RTW states to pass RTW ordinances.
Those benefits have “sold” well and the union bosses are madder than a bunch of hornets.
According to a Heritage Foundation report, today there 24 RTW states and, uniformly, union membership has decreased. Consider Idaho:
% of Idaho
2014 < 5%
The report offers an interesting idea: Why shouldn’t local governments in non-RTW states pass RTW legislation and make these RTW municipalities?
Imagine what the union bosses would do if all of those unionized city (aka, “patronage”) workers had the option to leave their unions! They might just start jumping off the rooftops where they normally threaten non-union employees.
Let the discussion begin…
To read the Heritage Foundation report, click on the following link:
”Local Governments Can Increase Job Growth and Choices by Passing Right-to-Work Laws.”