For the third straight day, former State Treasurer Sarah Steelman attempted to stoke her U. S. Senate campaign bid with an attack on unions. From her op-ed:
"I want to help lead the great American comeback and believe me this country will come back. The first step that Missouri has to take to regain its competitive advantage is to become a Right to Work state. For too long we've seen jobs leave our country, and now its not just China we have to compete with, it's the 22 States that have instituted free-market principles by passing Right to Work legislation. We should not be forcing workers to join unions. It is an infringement on their freedom. Missouri employers and workers deserve a competitive economic landscape."
There are two primary reasons Missouri should implement Right to Work legislation.
One, it will allow us to regain our competitive advantage with the states touching our border. The National Institute for Labor Relations Research (NILRR) recently released a study showing the tangible effects of Right to Work legislation. Their research shows that States that have passed Right to Work legislation enjoyed a 3.7% increase in non-farm private sector employment while non Right to Work states have lost 2.8% of those same jobs over the same period (1999-2009). The study also finds that real personal income has grown by 28.3% in Right to Work states while forced-union states have only seen a 14.7% increase (1999-2009).
Two, it's a matter of freedom. It is our duty to protect the freedom of our workers to make their own decisions, whether it is to join a union or not.
"We have to change the way we do business in this state. Right to Work not only allows more freedom to choose for workers, it also improves the economic landscape by attracting more workers and more business to the State. I applaud the effort of President Pro-tem Senator Rob Mayer and other legislators who are working hard to get this legislation passed."