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|Hare Still Supports Employee Free Choice Act
|A bill pending in Washington that would make it easier for workers to unionize has the backing of the Galesburg area's representative in the U.S. House of Representatives.
17th District Congressman Phil Hare says a key component of the Employee Free Choice Act is arbitration, which would be required on a first contract if negotiations fail to produce a deal within a year. Opponents say the threat of arbitration will be a negotiating plan for unions instead of a last resort.
But Hare says arbitrators are agreed on by both workers and management and they are not likely to be pro-labor. "Arbitrators tend to be conservative," Hare said. "They're normally bound to base their decisions on factors that are outlined in the law, such as comparability of wages in similar jobs in that region."
The Rock Island Democrat says binding arbitration is an important part of the bill that aims to achieve a first contract for newly unionized workers. Hare says without the provision in there, he compared it to a car without a transmission - saying it might look good but it's not going anywhere.
Hare says once a union has won certification fairly and squarely, employers who might not be interested in negotiating a contract with employees will get serious when they are up against an arbitration deadline.
The bill is pending in Congress. It passed the House in 2007 and is likely to be approved by that chamber again. The legislation, especially in its current form, is not as certain to pass - or even be called for a vote - in the Senate.
|06 13 09 by Newsroom
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