Democrats oppose bill limiting workers’ rights
April 4, 2012
AUGUSTA – Top Democrats on the Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development Committee released the following statement in advance of a last minute work session on a measure that will undermine Maine workers' ability to negotiate with their employers over wages and working conditions.
LD 309, the so-called “right-to-work” legislation will make it harder for firefighters, nurses, snow plow drivers, and other public employees to establish safer working conditions for themselves and safer communities across the state.
“This is nothing short of an eleventh-hour shot across the bow to Maine public workers,” said Rep. John Tuttle, D-Sanford, the lead House Democrat on the Labor committee. “It won’t help create a single job or get our economy back on track. We hope to see this bill voted down by the committee today.”
On average, working families in Right-to-Work states earn $5,538 a year less than states without the laws and the rate of workplace deaths is 52.9 percent higher, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“It is shameful that Republicans are trying yet again to take away rights for Maine workers,” said Senator Troy Jackson, D-Aroostook. “Time and again, the Governor and his Republican allies have undermined and insulted Maine workers. Maine people deserve a Governor and lawmakers who will stand with them--not against them."
The committee will take a vote on the measure today.
Jodi Quintero [Tuttle], 287-1488, c. 841-6279
Ericka Dodge [Jackson], 232-5892