August 23, 2017

LIUNA’s Fact Sheet: Right to Prosper and So-Called Right to Work

Our Right to Prosper and So-Called Right-to-Work

Our country is about more than just low wage jobs. What makes America different is that it’s about more than work; our country is about the opportunity to get ahead and prosper. The corporate-backed elitists pushing so- called “right-to-work” are out to cut your pay, destroy your pension and weaken your union. It’s a well-funded nationwide effort and we must fight to stop them.

Our Right to Prosper is under attack by right-to-work laws that undermine your union, threaten training programs, cut wages, destroy good benefits, and jeopardize pensions.

  •   “Right-to-work” allows workers to opt-out of their fair share of union dues, stretching your union to the breaking point by forcing it to cover “free riders.”
  •   “Right-to-work” will deprive you of the family-supporting wages you deserve – workers in “right-to-work” states make about $5,300 a year less than workers in free-bargaining states.
  •   The health of you and your family will suffer – in “right-to-work” states, 28 percent more people lack health insurance. And your pension will be threatened as companies run away from their obligations.
  •   “Right-to-work” laws can be deadly. The rate of workplace deaths is 36 percent higher in “right-to-work” states. Workers in those states also lose out on workers’ compensation.“Right-to-work” is bad for your employer, too – it gives the upper hand to “low road” companies that offer poor pay and benefits and no career ladder. They can also devastate your local economy.
  •   Employers like yours negotiate with a union for a reason – they get access to a skilled, trained workforce. “Right-to-work” laws hurt their ability to compete on the quality, safety and productivity advantages they offer by using union workers.
  •   The good wages you make – the wages your union-negotiated – allow you to spend more money at local shops, restaurants, and other businesses. By weakening unions and putting those wages at risk, “right-to-work” laws can hurt your community’s economy as well. America is about prosperity for all but “right-to-work” laws hit the pocketbooks of women and minorities hard by threatening their unions.
  •   Latino union members earn $45 more each week than nonunion Latinos, while unionized African Americans earn 30 percent more each week than those, not in a union.
  •   “Right-to-work” laws undo the major gains unions have made in closing the gap between men’s and women’s pay. While the overall gender gap is 32 percent, it is only 5 percent among men and women who are in a union. Laborers’ International Union of North America – 905 16th Street NW | Washington, D.C. 20006 | 202-942-2246 | www.liuna.org

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