Fed up with the relentless attacks on workers from state legislators, Michiganders have launched a new campaign to protect collective bargaining rights. The Protect Our Jobs campaign has already begun collecting signatures to put a constitutional amendment on the November ballot that would ensure workers’ rights to form unions and bargain together for fair pay and better working conditions.
There’s no doubt that this initiative would be good for workers, but it’s also crucial for the state’s economic recovery. With the ability to bargain collectively, workers can regain their grasp on the middle class and pump much-needed consumer spending into the economy.
It’s that time of year again. Children will soon line the streets with their shiny new lunchboxes, waiting for the bus to arrive. As you see your child off to school this year, remember the foundation of a solid education—teachers. A report from the American Rights at Work Education Fund highlights the positive impact labor-management partnerships are having in our nation’s classrooms—and underscores the role collective bargaining plays in improving student achievement. Read more »
While the collective bargaining rights of teachers are under attack across the country, we’ve heard plenty from politicians looking to score partisan points. But often drowned out in this cacophony are the voices of educators and school administrators who continue to point out that collective bargaining works for our schools. A new report from American Rights at Work Education Fund highlights the positive impact labor-management partnerships are having in our nation’s classrooms—and underscores the role collective bargaining plays in improving student achievement. It’s a tool for innovation that is improving education from New Jersey to California.
The report, “Partnerships in Education: How Labor-Management Collaboration Is Transforming Public Schools,” is available here.
“The schools lifted up in this report make it clear that revoking collective bargaining rights isn’t just the wrong way to address budget deficits—it’s also a threat to the quality of our schools,” said Kimberly Freeman Brown, Executive Director of American Rights at Work. Read more »
Last March, facing rising opposition, Republicans in Wisconsin met abruptly in a closed meeting to pass controversial legislation stripping Wisconsin public employees of their collective bargaining rights. Today, that bill was struck down by Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi. Judge Sumi, a Republican-appointed judge, ruled that Act 10 was passed in violation of the state’s open meetings law.
In her decision, Judge Sumi wrote that the tactics used by proponents of Walker’s unionbusting bill were in clear violation of the state’s constitution, “We are entitled by law to free and open access to governmental meetings, and especially governmental meetings that lead to the resolution of very highly conflicted and controversial matters.” According to Judge Sumi, the methods by which the bill was passed denied the people of Wisconsin their stake in the legislative process. She ruled that the abuse of power was so egregious that the court had no choice but to strike down the law. Read more »
Students celebrate the last day of school as the end of homework and the start of summer. But for many teachers across Wisconsin, where Gov. Scott Walker’s attacks on public employees are still in full swing, the end of this school year may also be the beginning of an early retirement.
More than 130 teachers in Madison and its surrounding counties will be retiring this June–a retirement rate that’s 62 percent higher than the average from the past five years. Of course, it’s not just teachers who find their retirement on the line. The number of Wisconsin public employees that have filed for retirement in 2011 is up nearly 80 percent over the same period last year. Read more »
At the start of this year, we let you know that a lockout of NFL players would hurt more than just the athletes. We underscored that it would also threaten the jobs and livelihoods of countless workers and business owners who rely on the industry to support their families. Read more »