May 2023
print Print  email Email Archive

Also In This Issue Trudeau's Vow to
Local 213

Prime Minister to Introduce
National Anti-Scab Law read_more

Ariz. Local's Push
Pays Off

640's Hard-Won Growth read_more

Outreach Targets Girls
A Window to
Electrical Work read_more

'Unions Are Cool Again'
Generation Z and
the IBEW read_more

2023 Photo Contest
Nearly $4,000 in Prizes read_more

North of 49°
'Get Creative, Dream Big':
Canadian Conference Fuels Organizing Momentum read_more

Au nord du 49° parallèle
L'élan de syndicalisation alimenté par la conférence canadienne inspire la créativité et de rêver
grand read_more

My IBEW Story Paul Nuspl,
St. Louis Local 1 read_more

Grounded in History Inflation and the 'Age-Old Attack' on Labor read_more




Change of Address


Cover Photo

Winning the Battle
Against Right-to-Work
'We're Not Stopping With Michigan'

When Michigan repealed its so-called right-to-work law in March, it wasn't just a huge victory for working families in that state. It was a shot across the bow.

It was the first time a state revoked a right-to-work law in nearly 60 years and a major victory for the IBEW and all unions that have fought against such laws since they were invented in 1947. These laws weaken unions by allowing workers to free-ride, enjoying the benefits of a collective bargaining agreement without contributing their share of the costs of negotiating and enforcing that contract.

"What an absolutely great day for the IBEW and especially our members in Michigan," International President Kenneth W. Cooper said. "I wish I could personally thank each and every one of them who worked to make this a reality. I salute the state legislators who stood with us and especially Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has been a friend of working families.

"But this is just a start. Let this be a message to all the states still putting up roadblocks to fair wages and fair representation for working people. We're watching, and we're not stopping with Michigan."

Whitmer also signed into law a bill that reinstates prevailing wage laws on public projects. Prevailing wage laws require wages to be paid at fair market value, whether the work is done by union or nonunion workers. They also ensure the work is high quality and on time, and often done by local contractors.

Restoring Workers' Rights

Michigan is the first state to repeal such a law since 1965, when Indiana did so, although it passed a new one in 2012 that remains in effect. The only other state to repeal a right-to-work law was New Hampshire in 1949. There are now 26 states with such a law.

Supporters of these laws paint them as giving employees a choice, but they are intended to suppress the power of working families, not to mention their wages and benefits. read_more

  Local Lines

Officers Column Cooper:
Michigan Is Just the Start read_more
Our Work Through
Your Lens read_more

TransitionsGreg DeVries;
Philip W. Young read_more

PoliticsSenate Lines Up Bills to
Put Money Back in
Workers' Pockets and Expand Rights read_more

Circuits'Huge' Win for Code of Excellence: On-Clock Training at Raytheon Plant;
'Exciting' Agreement Brings Fiber Jobs to IBEW Lineworkers at
Alabama Power;
Stephenson, Utility CEO Honored as Labor-Management Partners;
Future Leaders: Apply for the
Founders' Scholarship read_more

LettersThe Last Storm Call read_more

In MemoriamMarch 2023 read_more

Who We AreAfter Coming to U.S., LocalĀ 26 Member Lives Her Dreams Through IBEW read_more