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Latest News - June 2015

June 8, 2015
National Labor Relations Board Pushing for Non-Union Members to Pay Fees
Source: WTVY.COM

Alabama, Georgia and Florida are all right-to-work states. That means, employers can't force workers to join a union. But The National Labor Relations Board may force some non-union workers to pay a fee anyway.

Right-to-work laws are supposed to protect non-union workers from this:

“Unfortunately, in 25 states they can be fired from their jobs to tend their dues or fees to a union,” said Mark Mix, president of the National Right-to-Work Committee.

Some states don't allow this to happen, but if the National Labor Relations Board has its way, non-union employees may be forced to pay up.

“If you are compelling non-union members to pay agency grievance fees or whatever it is, you're essentially compelling them to join a union, which is in direct contradiction of our constitution in Nebraska,” said Gov. Pete Ricketts.

Gov. Ricketts testified last week on Capitol Hill, saying right-to-work is working and should be protected.

“I think it allows people to have more freedom, more flexibility and again it gets back to choice. My experience in Nebraska is the people in Nebraska overwhelmingly support this - they have for almost 70 years.”

But opponents to of right to work say non-union members are free-loading because they get free benefits without having to pay. Unions end up eating the costs.

The AFL-CIO, the largest union organization, says employees with right-to-work protections make on average $6,000 less than union workers. They also say poverty rates in right-to-work states tend to be higher.

“It's not just that you make less money, you get fewer benefits, but also it doesn't create jobs,” said U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, D-WI. “You have a right to work for less in these states, but it doesn't necessarily benefit any people.”

Congressman Pocan is a pro-union advocate. He says non-union members should have to pay to get the benefits.

Rickets, on the other hand, thinks right to work is economically successful.

“I’m looking to make sure we continue to retain, that the NLRB doesn't uncut that rule so that we can continue to try and attract jobs to our state.”

The National Labor Relations Board is waiting to hear from you on this issue. They've extended their deadline for public comments until July 15th.



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