I am also one of the so-called union bosses or “union thugs” that have been portrayed as the root of all evil by the Koch Brothers and others, like Sen. Meekhof and Mr. Van Andel.
The reality is, this could not be further from the truth.
As a unionized worker, I am among some of the most-qualified, hardest-working and dedicated employees in Michigan. Unionized workers have made many a company executive rich.
Meanwhile, all we workers ask is to be recognized and bargained with fairly, so we can have a safe workplace and a decent life for ourselves and others in our communities.
The notion that this “Freedom to Work” law will make unions provide more value to our members and compete for their membership is nonsense. What Meekhof fails to mention is that he included in the legislation language that requires that the employee who doesn’t pay union dues get all the benefits of the union contract. All the while, the union is required, by law, to represent the nonmember as if they were a dues-paying member.
I wonder if the person who thinks this is fair is a member in a club or business entity that gives their services away for free. I think not.
When you have a protest, like we had in Lansing on Dec. 11, and those voices fall on deaf ears, it’s time to get some new ears in there to listen.
Considering the unionized workforce in Michigan is about 18 percent, why were the Republicans so bent on passing right to work (for less)? This is nothing more than class warfare. Unions in Michigan are the reason that all workers are in the middle class, and without us the standard of living in this state will decline.
I am proud to wear the colors of the union!
President, Local 388 UWUA
Vice President, Michigan State Utility Workers Council