Massachusetts House Votes to Curb Union Rights

It looks like Massachusetts is the latest state showing hostility to working class laborers. Last night, the State House of Representatives voted to curb bargaining rights to health care for public employees like teachers and police officers, under the guise of saving money. In a unique twist, though, this effort was pushed through by Democrats, many of whom were supported by labor unions. Boston Globe:

“It’s pretty stunning,’’ saidRobert J. Haynes, president of the Massachusetts AFL-CIO. “These are the same Democrats that all these labor unions elected. The same Democrats who we contributed to in their campaigns. The same Democrats who tell us over and over again that they’re with us, that they believe in collective bargaining, that they believe in unions. . . . It’s a done deal for our relationship with the people inside that chamber.’’

“We are going to fight this thing to the bitter end,’’ he added. “Massachusetts is not the place that takes collective bargaining away from public employees.’’

The vote now moves to the Senate, though it looks like it's got a tougher chance of pushing through there. And many House Dems were strong critics of the bill. Representative Denise Provost, a Somerville Democrat, told the Globe, “In the bigger world out there, this fits into a very bad movement to disempower labor unions.’’

Read the full story here.

AlterNet / By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd

Posted at April 27, 2011, 8:02am

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