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ERIC Number: EJ994770
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 13
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0748-8475
Poverty, Productivity, and Public Health: The Effects of "Right to Work" Laws on Key Standards of Living
Minor, Darrell
Thought & Action, v28 p17-29 Fall 2012
On February 1, 2012, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels signed a "right to work" (RTW) provision in the state's labor laws, making Indiana the 23rd RTW state in the nation. In addition to becoming the 23rd RTW state in the nation, Indiana is the first in more than a decade to pass a law undermining the ability of unions to organize and represent their members. In RTW states, unions are prohibited from including "union security clauses" in their contracts, which are those clauses that require all employees in the bargaining unit to either join the union or pay a portion of its dues as a condition of employment. Thus, RTW laws are generally believed to weaken unions. Worker-friendly states (those states without RTW laws), on the other hand, allow provisions for the union to be the exclusive bargaining agent for those workers who are eligible for membership, and also require all eligible employees to pay at least a portion of the union dues. Supporters of RTW have cited a number of reasons for enacting such laws, but mostly they rely on non-existent research and false conclusions. There are several non-economic reasons for people to support RTW laws. But the question of whether RTW laws benefit a state economically has remained largely unanswered. In this paper, using the most recent data available from the U.S. Census, the BLS, the Bureau of Economic Analysis, and other public sources, the author has analyzed a spectrum of seven measures for standard of living, and determined whether there are differences in these measures between the 22 RTW states (not including Indiana, which joined them after this data was collected) and the 28 worker-friendly states (including Indiana). (Contains 4 tables and 26 endnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana; United States