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Mo. Legislators Hear Testimony On Right-To-Work

J. Stephen Conn

Supporters and opponents of legislation that would make Missouri a right-to-work state crowded into a hearing room Wednesday at the State Capitol.

The bill would forbid workers from being forced to join unions or pay union dues as a condition of employment.  Greg Hoberock, national chair of Associated Builders and Contractors, testified in favor of the measure.

“I think you need a balance. I don’t think this bill excludes union membership, I think it give the employee the right to make their own choice to further (their) income and to have a job and to do what they want to do,” Hoberock said.

Mike Lewis with the state chapter of the AFL-CIO spoke against the bill.

“It weakens unions, and it weakens (the) collective bargaining unit,” Lewis said. “It destroys the best job security protection that exists, a union contract. Meanwhile, it allows some workers to pay nothing and receive all the benefits paid for by union membership.”

The bill’s supporters say that becoming a right-to-work state would result in more companies moving to Missouri and creating new jobs.  The House committee on Workforce Development will vote on the bill at a later date.

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