Mich. Initiative Would Guarantee Union Rights

Monday, 24 Sep 2012 10:16 AM

By Greg McDonald

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A fight over a controversial ballot initiative in Michigan on collective bargaining rights is turning out to be the most costly election year battle in the state, with supporters and opponents spending an estimated total of $35 million to $40 million.
 
According to the Detroit News, if Proposal 2 passes in November it would make Michigan the first state in the country to provide a constitutional guarantee of collective bargaining rights to unions, a possibility that would be a huge setback for Republicans in the state who control the legislature and the governor's office.
Supporters of the initiative say it's needed because Republicans have passed some 30 laws just since 2010 in an effort to deny them rights, benefits, and pay they have fought hard to get.
But opponents say the amendment would help keep pedophiles and other bad teachers in the classroom and would hurt the rights of all workers.
 
The aim of organized labor, according to the News, is to keep Michigan from becoming another  right-to-work state. There are 23 in the country so far, where collective bargaining rights have been decimated and union efforts to recruit or force employees to join have been banned.

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