Sorry Mr. Trumka, They’re Just Not That Into You

Katie Gage
April 20, 2011

It seems like every few days we see another example of workers giving unions the cold shoulder.

Over the last three decades, unionization in the private sector has plummeted from 35% to just under 7% today. This is the lowest rate in a century.

In fact, nine out of 10 Americans currently working in a non-union environment would say “no” to unionization, if given the choice.

But Big Labor bosses don’t seem to get the message. Instead, they work to force unionization on employees and employers at every turn. They’re like a bad first date who won’t take “no thank you” for an answer.

And in recent days they have grown increasingly desperate and turned to regulatory agencies to do their bidding. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is tasked with administering to disputes between unions and employers in the private sector. The agency is supposed to be “independent” and is funded with taxpayer dollars.

Under the Obama Administration, the NLRB has become hyper-partisan with board members like Craig Becker advocating for Big Labor’s agenda resulting in job-killing policies that hurt workers and negatively impact small businesses. Becker is a former lawyer for the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) and Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and continues to serve as an advocate for labor bosses in spite of the fact that the American people pay his salary.

The National Mediation Board (NMB) was created in the 1930s to settle labor disputes in the airline and railroad industries and keep America moving. However, the agency has become yet another place where labor bosses are seeking favors and gifts due to the fact that workers in the railroad and airline industries have repeatedly rejected unionization.

Instead of standing by the decisions made by workers, the NMB issued a rule change upending nearly a century of precedent whereby a majority of employees were required to vote in favor of the union to form a collective bargaining unit. Two of three NMB members, also handpicked supporters of Big Labor decided that a majority of those voting was sufficient to create a collective bargaining unit even if it meant workers lost their voice and vote.

Even though it’s the workplace equivalent to being forced into a second date, Big Labor bosses cheered the change of a rule in place since Franklin Delano Roosevelt was president.

The actions of the NMB were so egregious, that the U.S. House of Representatives recently voted to undo them in its reauthorization legislation for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

All of this comes on the heels of workers and small businesses thwarting efforts by union bosses to undo democratic staples like the secret ballot. In the last session of Congress, elected officials supported and financed by labor organizations introduced the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act (EFCA).

The legislation would have effectively eliminated the secret ballot by instituting a card check process allowing organizers to coerce and intimidate workers forcing them to support unionization. And after the collective bargaining unit had been formed through fear and harassment, the bill required binding arbitration empowering the government to mandate contract terms on employees and employers alike without their consent.

The legislation was soundly rejected on Capitol Hill by elected representatives on behalf of their constituents sending a message to Big Labor that said, “don’t call us, we’ll call you.”

So I have a message for Mr. Trumka and his Big Labor boss pals as they work to force workers into their ranks against their will: “Sorry guys, they’re just not that into you.”

Tell Congress: Stop the PRO Act

WFI is working to prevent passage of the so-called Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act)—a wholesale labor reform package that takes the current careful balance of labor rules and tips it greatly in the favor of labor bosses and forced collective bargaining.

The PRO Act robs workers of the right to a secret ballot to form a union, forces union contracts on workers without a vote of approval, and expose workers’ personal contact information to union bosses seeking to organize a workplace. And that’s just the start.

Help us speak out against this woefully misguided and blatantly anti-worker legislation. Review and send the message below to your members of Congress today.

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WFI Key Vote Letter: Opposition to PRO Act

— 02.10.2020 —
Dear Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader McCarthy: On behalf of the Workforce Fairness Institute (WFI), I am writing to share our organization’s vehement opposition to H.R. 2474, the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act). WFI has serious concerns with the broad, overreaching nature of this legislation and the many ways in which it would undermine worker freedom and privacy, while simultaneously threatening businesses and entire industries that keep America’s economy thriving. Please note that WFI will include votes on the PRO Act and its amendments on our Congressional Labor Scorecard, which scores and ranks legislators based on their activity associated with workplace issues. WFI was established to fight for American employees and employers as well as our entire economy. We believe in worker empowerment, the right of workers to be fully informed of the options available for worker-involvement in the workplace, and the right to freely choose whether to organize or not. No individual or group – government, a union or an employer – should be able to intimidate or restrict workers’ in exercising these rights. In an attempt to boost flailing union membership at the expense of workers’ rights, the PRO Act would upend decades of established U.S. labor law and institute myriad anti-employee and anti-employer policies that have already been soundly rejected—by Congress, various federal agencies, or the courts. Among its most blatant affronts to workers’ rights, the PRO Act would eliminate the right to a secret ballot when determining whether to unionize and enforce a “card check” system, exposing workers to the potential for harassment, intimidation, and coercion. The PRO Act would also enforce binding arbitration in union negotiations by a government- appointed bureaucrat; repeal and eliminate right-to-work laws in 27 states, force workers to fund union activities regardless of whether they support them; and threaten the ability of individuals to operate as independent contractors, eliminating traditional economic and employment opportunities and threatening the independence and flexibility of the emerging gig economy. On top of all that, the PRO Act would force all workers’ personal and home contact information to be provided to a union during organizing campaigns – in an electronic, searchable format no less, with no limit on what a union can do with that information. WFI believes in advancing sensible policies that protect and preserve the rights of both employees and employers, and we welcome the opportunity to work with legislators who also support these efforts. However, the PRO Act does not achieve these goals and would instead threaten the rights of both while jeopardizing our entire economy. WFI urges members of the House to strongly oppose the PRO Act. Sincerely, Heather Greenaway Executive Director Workforce Fairness Institute See the letter here.
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