Right time to become right-to-work

Monday, December 3, 2012
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

A Michigan-based labor policy analyst thinks his state is poised to become the 24th right-to-work state.

Vernuccio, VincentVincent Vernuccio, director of labor policy for the Makinac Center for Public Policy, says legislators in Lansing are having serious talks concerning right-to-work legislation.

"Right-to-work simply means that workers have a choice whether or not to pay a union," Vernuccio explains. "Right-to-work does not affect collective bargaining in any other way, except it takes away the ability of a union to get a worker fired for not paying them. In right-to-work states, they can't do that."

If Michigan were to become a right-to-work state, it would be only the second state of its kind in the Great Lakes region. Indiana became a right-to-work state earlier this year.

"Indiana is much more attractive to business right now because of that right-to-work status, and Michigan's got to catch up," the policy analyst notes. "Indiana going right-to-work probably plays … a little bit into what Michigan is considering right now."

And he points out that Indiana is not the only right-to-work state that is doing well.

"Right-to-work states are growing faster, having bigger population growth," Vernuccio notes. "Their economies are growing better, workers are doing better -- they're getting bigger growth in wages over the last decade."

Michigan currently has a Republican governor and the GOP controls both chambers, so Vernuccio believes now is the time for right-to-work legislation to pass, even though it has been right for The Great Lakes State for decades. "Now it is just time where they can actually put the correct policy into law," he states.

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