Union leaders from the private sector say Governor Walker’s budget repair bill is an attack against all workers in the state.
The proposal being debated at the Capitol this week would strip most public sector workers of their collective bargaining rights, and also increase their contributions to pensions and health benefits.
Danny McGowan with the Wisconsin Teamsters says the Governor is trying to undo decades of fair negotiations through the bill under the guise of trying to fix the budget. He says it’s an attempt to stifle the voices of people in the work place and break up their unions.
McGowan says all union workers in the state will stand behind those in the private sector as they work to defeat the bill.
Governor Walker has said he wants to treat the state like a business, but Michael Bolton with the United Steel Workers says his process is flawed. He says well managed corporations don’t destroy decades of practices on a week’s notice, and the Governor is rushing the bill forward without realizing the full consequences of his actions.
Private sector union leaders worry the bill will set the stage for their agreements to be challenged in the future and create the possibility of making Wisconsin a “right to work” state. Several are pledging their full support to public sector employees as they battle the bill.