The Michigan State Police spent an extra $900,000 on overtime and other expenses to have a large presence at the Capitol during demonstrations against a right-to-work law in December.
Government figures released Wednesday showed union membership declined from 11.8 percent to 11.3 percent of the workforce.
“We’re going to lobby every time we feel it’s necessary,” said Mike Green, president of United Auto Workers Local 652. “
It took nearly three weeks and a new contract offer to get the fighting sides in hockey’s latest labor dispute back to the bargaining table.
NHL players will begin voting Sunday on whether they will grant the players’ association’s executive board the authority to dissolve the union because of the inability to reach a collective bargaining agreement with the league.
One day after historic right-to-work legislation passed in Michigan, and then signed by the governor, the mood in Lansing remains tense between lawmakers.
Now that Michigan has become a right-to-work state, unions in this stronghold of organized labor confront a new and urgent problem: convincing members to continue paying for their services instead of taking them for free.
Michigan state troopers, some in riot gear, worked to maintain order Tuesday as thousands of pro-and anti-right-to-work protesters clashed at the Capitol.
“This would definitely galvanize union leadership,” said Art Schwartz, a retired General Motors labor negotiator. “Like any other group, some people get involved, some people don’t, but I think you’re going to see the unions fight this every way they can.”
Michigan is just days away from becoming the nation’s 25th right-to-work state — now that a set of controversial bills have passed their first hurdles in the Republican controlled legislature.
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