Our brothers and sisters in Michigan are under attack. Yesterday was a dark day for democracy in Michigan. The people were shut out of their own Capitol so that lawmakers could better serve corporate special interests.
In a move which trampled debate and democracy, workers’ rights were thrown out the window as the State Legislature rammed through a union-busting bill designed to bust unions, reduce benefits, and lower wages for ALL workers.
In just one day, both the state House and Senate introduced and passed a so called “right to work for less” bill -- a divide and conquer strategy to roll back workers’ rights 100 years by crippling solidarity among working people. States with these RTW laws have higher poverty rates, more accidents in the workplace and lower wages for all workers. These bills have NO correlation with job creation and are nothing but a corporate backed attempt to keep wages low.
The bills were passed among massive protests by working people at the Capitol. Shamefully, protesters were locked out of their own state Capitol and some in the crowd were maced by the police. On top of all this, the bills are being rammed through in the lame duck session because the GOP will not have the votes when the new legislature is sworn in. This is clearly not what democracy looks like; this is an assault on our rights as workers and an assault on our democracy.
The fight is not over. Due to legislative rules, the bill is held for 5 days. We have the weekend to stand up for our rights and tell Michigan’s Gov. Snyder that this anti-worker bill is wrong. Sign this petition against RTW or call Gov. Snyder at (517) 373-3400. There will also be a rally on Tuesday in Lansing. Supporters will be gathering at 9:00 a.m. at the state Capitol.
Michigan’s Gov. Snyder was elected in 2010. Over the last two years he has repeatedly stated that RTW laws were not a priority for Michigan. This all changed yesterday when Gov. Snyder held a last minute press conference to announce that he not only supported the legislation for Michigan, but would sign it when it came to his desk.
The billionaires behind Michigan’s anti-worker law are the same ones who were behind Gov. Walker’s union-busting law -- The Koch Brothers. As the Detroit Free Press reports: “Gov. Snyder's right-to-work initiative has the coordinated support of Americans for Prosperity, the conservative non-profit organization that funded Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's efforts to strip that state's public employee unions of their collective bargaining rights. AFP was founded by wealthy industrialists Charles and David Koch.”
An assault on Michigan workers is an assault on workers’ rights everywhere. We must be diligent and stand up for our rights as workers in Wisconsin and everywhere. United we stand, divided we fall.