In our regular weekly feature, we’ll be taking a look at the winners and losers of the week in the struggle for the rights of working families. The winners will be the persons or organizations that go above and beyond to expand or protect the rights of working families, while the losers will be whoever went above and beyond to limit or deny those rights.
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued the following statement after several anti-worker bills were defeated in the Missouri legislature:
Defeating the attempt in Missouri to enact so-called “Right-to-Work” and paycheck deception legislation sends a strong signal that working people will stand together to prevail over outrageous attacks on their rights. This victory is a testament to common-sense bipartisanship and a direct blow to corporate interests whose goal is literally to hurt working people. Along with our allies, we’ll continue to build upon our successes and move forward to create better opportunities for all workers.
Extremists in the Missouri House are pushing for legislation that would hurt working families, importing a national agenda that faces bipartisan opposition in the state. Despite claims made by the proponents of the legislation, paycheck deception and "right to work" for less bills wouldn't help the states' workers and would limit the rights of those workers.
If you're in Missouri, call your state representatives at 888-825-1418 and tell them to oppose "right to work" H.B. 1770.
Pennsylvania working families and their allies took a big step last week in their fight to stop paycheck deception legislation. Following a statewide mobilization aimed at county commissioners, one of the most influential groups supporting the anti-union bill backed off, significantly slowing momentum for the legislation.
Pennsylvania Republicans are pushing falsely titled "paycheck protection" legislation that would take away rights from workers and keep them from having good wages and benefits. The legislation would hamper workers’ ability to organize unions and represent themselves in negotiations with employers, leaving them open to any number of assaults on salary, benefits and working conditions. The legislation would prevent the deduction of union dues from public employee paychecks and is supported by groups related to the infamous Koch brothers, wealthy extremists who are behind many attacks against working families across the nation.
Information about the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) working in secret to push state-level policy to more extreme levels is coming to light more and more and America's working families are starting to stand up to the group's corporate-driven agenda. While ALEC's agenda is all over the policy map, the organization has a particular focus on pushing new laws that attack working families and undercut the rights of workers, both in the workplace and in retirement. Here are eight of the most dangerous and most widespread ways that ALEC is targeting workers and their right to a voice on the job.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon (D) vetoed a paycheck deception bill, saying the bill targeted a single group of employees and would have placed an undue burden on them. The legislation would've required that employees provide, on an annual basis, a written authorization for both withholding of union dues and for the authorization of the use of that money for political purposes.