Over the protests of thousands of labor union members who filled the Statehouse, a House committee voted on party lines today to send a bill that would bar unions and companies from negotiating contracts that require all employees to pay fees for representation.
House Bill 1468 — which supporters call the “right to work” bill and which opponents call the “right to work for less” bill — passed the House Employment, Labor and Pensions Committee on an 8-5 vote and now goes to the full House for debate.
These are private sector union members. There were +/- 2500 there.
If you’re wondering why there weren’t larger crowds, it’s because Mitch Daniels decertified public sector unions when he took office:
On Mr. Daniels’s first day in office, he decertified the state government employee unions; in the first eight months, 92% of government employees quit paying their union dues.
Then Daniels outsourced social services work in Indiana, the public sector jobs that serve the most vulnerable:
Processing of welfare, food-stamp and Medicaid claims in Indiana was plagued with difficulties when the state outsourced the system to International Business Machines Corp. and Affiliated Computer Services Inc. two years ago.
Indiana and former outsourcing partner IBM sued each other Thursday, May 13, the latest chapter in an increasingly sour relationship that went bad when the state decided last year to cancel an ambitious social services system. In October 2009, Gov. Mitch Daniels pulled the plug on Indiana’s 10-year, $1.6 billion outsourcing contract with IBM to streamline welfare eligibility in the state. Launched in 2007, the new system let citizens apply for welfare benefits online, in person or via telephone, and it implemented process changes designed to speed up and standardize eligibility determinations. Daniels called the concept — which drew criticism for high error rates and slow processing of eligibility requests — unworkable.
Private sector union members are joining the public sector union members in Wisconsin and Ohio because they know they’re next. First comes public unions and then private unions.
Along with requiring public employees to contribute more to pensions and health care coverage, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker wants to put his state in the right-to-work column. His proposals have touched off an epic battle in Madison between pro-labor Democrats and Republicans who say they’re just trying to balance the budget. And now that battle is spreading. Throngs of union members and supporters gathered in Indianapolis Monday for a protest against a proposed bill in the Indiana House that would restrict collective bargaining rights and make it a misdemeanor to require any employee to join or pay dues to a union.
To any interested Ohio BJ’ers:
Here’s information on today’s action in Ohio. The weather is lousy in NW Ohio, and we’re going to have trouble getting to Columbus from up here. If any of you are closer to Columbus and could come, that would be very helpful.
Please consider Mitch Daniels’ Indiana when looking at Wisconsin and Ohio. It’s the conservative template. Public then private. Indiana will be the 26th state to destroy private unions, and Wisconsin and Ohio will be next.