Letter to the Editor

Voting no on Prop A

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

On Tuesday, Aug. 7, Missouri voters will render a decision on what is labeled a Right to Work law. It would eliminate union shops in favor of open shops or non-union work places.

A union shop is a workplace where all bargaining unit employees are members of the labor union representing them.

An open shop is a workplace where employees are not required to join a union even though they receive the same benefits provided by the local union and paid for by the dues of the union members. This means the workers who do not join the union have more money in their pay checks because dues are not withheld from their paychecks. In other words, they get to free-load.

I am 71 years old and retired. I have been employed in places that had union shops, open shops, or no union at all. From personal experience I know that in terms of pay, benefits, and safety, the union shops are superior and worth the added money paid in dues.

Consider this: In 2011 Wisconsin became a Right to Work state for public employees. Membership in unions dropped by 36 percent. Then the average value of benefits, in the form of health care and pensions, declined by 21.1 percent from $27,811 to $21,971. Additionally, for a full-time worker annual wages are 3.1 percent or $1,558 lower in Right to Work states.

To help insure economic justice, I encourage everyone to vote no on the Right to Work law.

JOHN R. PIEPHO, Cape Girardeau