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Consider Starting or Moving Your Business to a "Right To
Prior to 1947 unions organized and operate
under the National Labor Relations Act. Before the act was
amended by the Thaft-Hartley Act of 1947 and subsequent
legislation, unions were allowed to force employees into
becoming members as a condition of employment. They
operated under what was called a “closed shop”. Not only
were employees required to become members, but, the unions
also did the hiring. They told the employer who they could
or could not hire.
When “closed shop” became illegal under the
Thaft-Hartley Act of 1947 unions moved to a new practice
called “union shop”. With this practice unions did not
force employees to join the union as a requirement to be
hired but they required new employees to join the union
within a specified period of time.
Unions were increasingly being perceived by
many in business as an impediment to growth. Employers
complained that unions resist when it was necessary to
achieve efficiencies and remain competitive by reduce their
workforce and implement new technologies (automation). Over
many years anti-union advocacy groups campaign for what they
call “right to work” laws. Today there are a total of 23
states that have “right to work” laws. They include: AL,
AZ, AR, FL, GA, ID, IN, IA, KS, LA, MS, NE, NV, NC, ND, OK,
SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, and WY. On 1 February 2012 Indiana
became the 23rd Right-to-Work State.
Under these new “right to work” rules adopted
by the states unions must operate under the open shop rule.
Under this rule, an employee cannot be compelled to join or
pay the equivalent of dues to a union, nor can the employee
be fired if he joins the union. In other words, the
employee has the right to work, regardless of whether or not
he is a member or financial contributor to such a union.
Union dues cannot be taken out of an employee’s paycheck
without written consent of the employee. The employee may
stop it at any time.
The Federal Government operates under open
shop rules nationwide, though many of its employees are
represented by unions.
Those opposed to the “right to work” laws
contend that it is unfair for employees to benefit from
being bound by the terms of union contracts even though they
are not required to pay dues. They also believe that lower
wages and bad working conditions will be result from the
lack of union existence. This has not been proven to
be true. Right-to-work states have to comply with the
same workplace safety rules as non-right-to-work states.
Should you consider starting or moving your
business to a “right to work” state?
Consider this: In a study done by Larry Gigerich – Managing
Director of Ginevus, “right to work states create more
private sector jobs, enjoy lower poverty rates, experience
more technology development, realize more personal income
growth, and increase the number of people covered by
employment-based private health insurance.” He went on to
state that “companies will not even consider non-right to
work states for new facilities, out of concern for how their
operations will be affected.”
Labor Relations Act
The Taft-Hartley Act of
National Right To Work
Legal Defense Foundation