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Letter of Support: Employee Rights Act, S. 1507 and H.R. 2810

September 28, 2011 J

Dear Senator Hatch and Representative Scott,

On behalf of more than 1.8 million Americans for Prosperity activists in all 50 states, I write in strong support of the Employee Rights Act, S. 1507 and H.R. 2810. Your bill halts the rapid expansion of overly-labor-friendly regulations and restores proper balance to labor-management relations.

Three damaging actions have recently come from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the independent agency charged with mediating union elections and enforcing labor laws. This should come as no surprise: President Obama has stacked the NLRB with former employees of the Service Employees International Union; one was recess-appointed and never confirmed by the Senate.

The NLRB’s actions will deal a major blow to employers and employees that want to exercise their right to work without joining a union. Starting in November, employers will be required to post a special notice of employees’ rights to unionize (a posting that fails to adequately explain employees’ rights not to unionize). The streamlined “quickie” election procedures proposed in June completely undercut an employer’s ability to raise legal challenges or communicate with employees about the election. And recently, the House passed a bill so the NLRB could not tell businesses where to locate their operations. We’re still waiting on Senate action.

Your bill tackles these concerns head on, protecting the secret ballot instead of allowing “card check” style elections where voters can be coerced. It prohibits union leaders from using membership dues for political activities without a member’s written consent. It clarifies that election procedures under the NLRB are to be fair and impartial: “quickie” elections are prohibited, the NLRB will address legal concerns that arise in a sensible order, and a majority of eligible workers must approve the union instead of just a majority of those voting in the election. Workers are even given a chance to vote within three years to say whether they want to keep a union once they’ve seen it in action.

Unions have contributed a great deal to this country and they still play an important role in our society. But when politics get in the way and unions are given unchecked power they actually hurt workers’ individual rights and hamper the economic viability of businesses.

It’s important to find balance between the legitimate interests of business and the legitimate protection of workers’ rights. Americans for Prosperity is proud to support the Employee Rights Act. I urge your colleagues to support passage of this important legislation, and I look forward to working with you in the future.

Sincerely,

James Valvo
Director of Government Affairs
Americans for Prosperity

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