Supporting Our Workers and Middle Class Families
I firmly support the right of labor unions as well as public and private employees, to collectively bargain. Republicans, however, are attempting to disband labor unions and limit collective bargaining rights. The people of Ohio spoke loudly when they defeated Issue 2: they will not tolerate efforts to eliminate the rights of workers and encourage the demise of the middle class.
Who are we to tell our teachers, fire fighters, police and other public employees that they cannot have a say in their working conditions? Americans need jobs, not partisan victories. These attacks have strengthened my resolve; as your member of Congress, I will fight to ensure labor unions remain as strong as possible.
Labor unions make up the very fabric of our society. Unions established:
- the middle class;
- minimum wages;
- 8 hour work days and paid overtime;
- health care insurance;
- paid sick leave, vacations, and holidays as standard benefits;
- unemployment insurance;
- workplace safety standards;
- workers’ compensation benefits; and
- retirement pensions
Unfortunately, union membership has declined by 8.2% since 1983, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Although, in 2010, unionized workers averaged $200 more in median weekly earnings than nonunionized workers, unionized workers made up only 11.9% of America’s workforce. There were 612,000 less unionized workers in 2010 than there were in 2009. This affected Ohio, in particular, which has the fifth largest number of unionized workers.
I will not sit by quietly and watch the successes of those who came before us be taken away. I voted no against The Protecting Jobs from Government Interference Act. H.R. 2587, which strips the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) of its long-standing power to protect workers who are unionized or trying to unionize from retaliatory actions of their employers. H.R. 2587 is an assault on working Americans and an assault on the middle class. It is the most significant attack on the National Labor Relations Act in a generation. I will oppose this and any future effort to limit the powers of the NLRB.
Fighting for the collective bargaining rights of union workers and the middle class is one of my top priorities. I will continue to be a tireless advocate for the cause. We must not let partisan ideology get in the way of creating jobs and keeping Americans prosperous.