Is Jo Ann Emerson Trying to Erode States' Rights?
According to the website Open Congress.Org, Jo Ann Emerson is sponsoring a bill allowing the federal government to force state and local governments to accept unionization.
This is their summary of H.R.413 - Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act of 2009
Public Safety officers are police and firemen. Judge for yourself.
1/9/2009--Introduced.Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act of 2009 - Provides collective bargaining rights for public safety officers employed by states or local governments. Directs the Federal Labor Relations Authority to determine whether state law provides specified rights and responsibilities for public safety officers, including:
(1) granting public safety employees the right to form and join a labor organization which excludes management and supervisory employees, and which is, or seeks to be, recognized as the exclusive bargaining agent for such employees; and
(2) requiring public safety employers to recognize and agree to bargain with the employees' labor organization. Requires the Authority to issue regulations establishing rights and responsibilities for public safety employers and employees in states that do not substantially provide for such public safety employee rights and responsibilities. Directs the Authority, in such cases, to:
(1) determine the appropriateness of units for labor organization representation;
(2) supervise or conduct elections to determine whether a labor organization has been selected as an exclusive representative by a voting majority of the employees in an appropriate unit;
(3) resolve issues relating to the duty to bargain in good faith;
(4) conduct hearings and resolve complaints of unfair labor practices; and
(5) resolve exceptions to arbitrator's awards. Grants a public safety employer, employee, or labor organization the right to seek enforcement of Authority regulations and orders, as well as prohibitions against lockouts or strikes, through appropriate state courts. Prohibits public safety employers, employees, and labor organizations from engaging in lockouts or strikes.Provides that existing collective bargaining units and agreements shall not be invalidated by this Act."
I support union activity when the union provides an economic benefit for employers who freely engage with them. States and local governments should decide for themselves what labor relationships they want.