Loss of unions impacts all

To the Journal editor:

Recently read a couple of editorials from The Detroit News. Also noticed the Mackinac Group is heavily flogging the same thing. Incidentally, “Right-to-Work” is, in my opinion, the worst misnomer since the Red Delicious apple.

Here are some facts to keep in mind when you read that former Gov. Snyder saved us from the evil of mandatory union membership when he made us a “Right-to-Work” state 10 years ago.

1. A “closed shop” is one in which a worker must join a union in order to work in that shop. It has been illegal in all 50 states since 1947.

2. An “agency shop” permits unions to assess a service fee to non-members to cover the cost of representing them. The Wagner Act of 1935 established the National Labor Relations Board to over see elections upon request, and requiring both sides to bargain in good faith, and to judge unfair labor practices.

The Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 outlawed secondary, or supportive, strikes, outlawed the closed shop, and gave each state the right to outlaw the agency shop, while at the same time requiring the union to represent every eligible worker, whether or not they chose to join the union. Of course, the result is exactly what was intended: the weakening of unions’ bargaining power.

Why pay dues when you can get all the protections and benefits for free? Benefits that noticeably shrunk along with union strength, as union participation has dropped over the last 10 years.

Health care coverage? Raises? Pensions? You are on your own, buddy. It is a fact that workplace injuries and fatalities trend higher in so-called Right-to-Work states. Well, I don’t expect to change any minds, only to arm you with some facts you won’t get from The Detroit News.


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