Right-To-Work Bill Introduced in PA Senate: David McAfee of Law360 ($$) writes that last week, a group of Senators in Pennsylvania introduced Senate Bill 1073, known colloquially as the Freedom of Employment Act (FEA). The FEA would make Pennsylvania a "right to work" state, meaning workers could not be compelled to join a labor union. State Sen. Mike Folmer issued a short statement describing the effects of SB 1073.
“Despite certain rhetoric, a Right to Work law simply gives employees the right to decide for themselves whether or not to join or financially support a union,” Folmer said in an email to other Senate members that was obtained by Law360. “Employees who presently work in the railway or airline industries already have this right; employees who work on a federal enclave sometimes have this right.”
Currently, twenty four states have variations of right-to-work laws on the books. Interestingly, a version of SB 1073 was introduced about eight months ago in the PA Senate, but did not pass. We will keep you posted as this legislation moves through the appropriate machinations.
Medics Fire Teamsters, Ending Labor Strike: Grecia Aguilar of CBS13 writes that paramedics in Imperial Valley, CA have voted to fire the Teamsters union. The firing effectively ends a 62-day labor strike by the paramedics against their employer, Gold Cross Ambulance Service. Strikers kicked the Teamsters out because they believed that the union was not representing their best interest, which was to come to a resolution and get back to work.
BART Negotiations Ongoing: ABC7 News reports that Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) officials were scheduled to meet with union representatives all weekend in an attempt to avert a crippling workers strike. The labor dispute has lasted all summer, with California Gov. Jerry Brown calling a 60 day "cooling off" period in order to delay a possible summer strike by BART employees. The cooling off period ends October 11, which is the earliest the employees could walk off the job. Currently, both sides admit to being far apart in negotiations. We will keep you posted.