Right-to-Work


Right-to-Work is WRONG!

Let's take Wisconsin for example: When Scott Walker became governor of Wisconsin in 2011, he declared, “Wisconsin is open for business”. In an attempt to ‘balance the state’s books’, his anti-union rhetoric and actions was at the cost of working-class Wisconsinites. Funded and fueled by anti-labor interest groups and anti-union politics, the Republican held senate enacted right to work laws that took aim at the collective bargaining rights of unions, making Wisconsin the 25th RTW state in 2015.

In 2011, the lives of Wisconsin teachers changed overnight. Attacks on collective bargaining rights have affected tenure, retirement and other important issues. Contracts were replaced with highly restrictive policy handbooks.

2013 - Set against the rise of the Tea Party and Occupy movements, the US Supreme Court's 2010 ruling in Citizens United, and the 2012 presidential campaign, Citizen Koch documents the consequences for democracy when private interests determine who is elected to deliver public good. When Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker stripped state workers of their union rights in 2011, was it simply a classic face-off between labor and management, or a bold political move designed to weaken his party's political opposition?

March 2, 2015 - Wisconsin Assembly Labor Committee Hearing on Right-to-Work Bill. Personal bankruptcy attorney, James Murray, Esq., (sarcastically) testifies in favor of Right-to-Work legislation.

Right-to-Work is a LIE!

Hidden behind false promises, the battle continues in Illinois and Indiana. A Right-to-Work propositions, "Prop A", made it onto Missouri's state primary ballot - but, not without opposition.

July 25, 2018 - SAG-AFTRA member & Missourian, John Goodman knows that Proposition A is wrong for Missouri. Vote NO On Prop A On August 7.
“In our glorious fight for civil rights, we must guard against being fooled by false slogans, such as ‘right to work.’ It is a law to rob us of our civil rights and job rights. Its purpose is to destroy labor unions and the freedom of collective bargaining by which unions have improved wages and working conditions of everyone…Wherever these laws have been passed, wages are lower, job opportunities are fewer and there are no civil rights. We do not intend to let them do this to us. We demand this fraud be stopped. Our weapon is our vote.”
~ Martin Luther King, 1961, Speaking on right-to-work laws

Right-to-Work for LESS!

Lower Wages

On average, when a Right-to-Work law is enacted, a worker’s income decreases by 3.1%. Workers in RTW states earn $6,109 (12.1%) less annually than workers in Collective Bargaining states. In addition, the median household income is $8,174 (13.9%) less in RTW states, as well.

Pay (In)Equity

12 of the 15 states with the largest pay gaps between men and women have RTW laws. Inversely, 15 of the 20 states with the smallest pay gaps between men and women are Collective Bargaining states; with Rhode Island positioned at number 20. On average, unionized women earn 90% of what unionized men earn, while non-union women earn 81% of what non-union men. Between union and non-union women, this averages out to a $219 difference in weekly earnings. The disparity is greater when ethnicity is factored in.

Union vs Non-Union Women by Ethnicity:
National Average Weekly Earnings
  Union Non-Union
 All Women  $942 / week $723 / week
 Asian  $975 / week $892 / week
 White  $975 / week $738 / week
 Hispanic  $829 / week $565 / week
 Black  $790 / week $616 / week

The disparity among the various ethnic groups among union and non-union men follows a similar pattern.

Higher Poverty Rates

8 of the 10 states with the highest poverty rates have Right-to-Work laws. Overall, the poverty rate in RTW states is 15.3%, compared to 12.8% in Collective Bargaining states. For children, the overall poverty rate is 21.4% in RTW states, compared to 18% in Collective Bargaining states.

7 of the 10 states with the highest unemployment rates have RTW laws, as well.

Lower Education Spending

RTW states spend 1/3 less per student in elementary and secondary education than in other states. This disparity affects students and educators alike.

Medical research has shown that income and education have a direct effect the overall health of a community.

Less Healthcare Benefits

47% of employers in Right-to-Work states offer health benefits to their employees, compared to 52.2% of employers in Collective Bargaining states. Like-wise, 13% of people under the age of 65 have no health insurance, compared to 9.4%. Overall, 21% more people lack health insurance in RTW states.

In relation, Right-to-Work states have a 12.4% higher Infant mortality rate, than Collective Bargaining states,

More Workplace Fatalities

Workplace fatality rates are 49% higher in Right-to-Work states than in Collective Bargaining states.

This page developed and maintained by CCRI Professional Staff Association. Send comments and suggestions to jdvota@ccri.edu.


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Last Updated: 9/3/19