SEIU RELEASE: Today, April 30, 2012
New NLRB Rule Takes Effect Today
You are most likely already aware of this unfortunate labor truth: The union election system in this country has failed, time and again, to protect the free choice of too many Americans who want to have a voice at work.
Happily, a new NLRB rule has gone into effect today (April 30th) that helps reform and streamline the election process; increase transparency and end incentives for supercilious challenges brought into the fold simply to delay the opportunity for workers to cast their votes.
Republicans in the U.S. Senate last week attempted to block this new rule. But thanks to SEIU members, we placed calls to our U.S. Senators in Minnesota and nationwide urging them to beat back this right-wing, GOP and corporate attempt to tread on worker’s rights. And they did.
This rule will now make it harder for corporations and their lawyers to manufacture frivolous litigation and drag out the election process for months, and sometimes years, hoping the workers will give up and never get to vote on whether they want a union. We’ve seen over and over again that anti-worker Republicans are intent on overturning the foundation of our nation’s labor laws – both at the federal and state level. Without reason, they seek to vilify public workers, restrict or eliminate collective bargaining rights for both private and public sector workers and move anti-worker legislation that would take away workers’ voices on the job.
SEIU’s Local 284 Executive Director Carol Nieters said, “In an era of unprecedented income inequality, Minnesotans want their congressional leaders, as well as Minnesota lawmakers, to focus on building a real economic recovery for the 99 percent, not attacking hard working families seeking to better their lives and communities. We should be working together – unions, government and the private sector – to continue rebuilding our economy and creating good jobs that can support a family, instead of trying to undermine workers’ fundamental right to organize a union if they choose to.”
Nieters commended actions congressional leaders took in standing with workers on this issue. “It is unfortunate the same courage and wisdom shown in the U.S. Senate did not prevail here at home in the Minnesota Legislature when lawmakers passed a bill that would have limited union dues from being deducted from state child-care subsidy payments. Thankfully, we have a governor courageous enough to use his veto pen on unnecessary bills like this because Republicans already blocked in-home child care providers from even voting on whether or not they wish to organize for representation.”
The other anti-worker effort spearheaded by Minnesota Republicans—and funded by corporate and conservative interests outside of the state—was the battle against allowing in-home child care providers who receive payments from parents qualified for child care assistance to vote on whether or not they wish to organize a union. A governor’s executive order allowing for a vote was struck down by a court.
The real motive behind these attacks is to create a country without unions–where nobody is left to stand up for workers when Wall Street executives outsource jobs or cut workers’ wages and benefits in search of higher profits.
Karen Louise Boothe
SEIU MN State Council
651-203-0401 x 15 (office)
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