Right to Work may surface as Labor Freedom Act

Look for the Labor Freedom Act to surface in January if the Michigan Freedom to Work (MIFTW) group has any say. Their goal is to turn Michigan into a right-to-work state and they are encouraging Republicans to take up the legislation.

Supporters say that Right to Work would allow people to choose whether or not to join the union -- but that's a right all workers already have.  The real goal of right-to-work policies is to let workers who benefit from a contract choose whether or not they pay dues or fees to support their union. However, the union would still have to represent those workers who choose not to pay. In essence, they would be “freeloaders” who get the same benefits and pay as dues-paying members.

MIFTW and other groups supporting the issue claim that right-to-work states foster job creation and provide labor freedom for all workers, despite mountains of credible evidence to the contrary (including a recent study by the Economic Policy Institute ).

Sen. Patrick Colbeck (R-Canton) and Rep. Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake) are supporters of Freedom to Work legislation. Gov. Snyder has maintained that right to work is not on his agenda because the issue is too divisive.