Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

California Card Check Choking Off State Funds

Self-described “labor sympathizer” Carole Goldberg published an article in today’s Sacramento Bee outlining a money grab by UNITE HERE officials, who are demanding that a new Indian tribes casino pact include mandatory recognition of card check organizing. The union’s demand is costing California’s tax system a half-billion — that’s billion, with a “b” — in casino revenues.

Says Goldberg:

A half-billion dollars in new state revenues should be an easy sell. But a tricky union issue may stall an agreement between Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and five California Indian nations …

All that stands in the way of this agreement is approval by the Legislature. And all that stands in the way of legislative approval is a demand by the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Union (United HERE!) that the compacts include provision for a certain form of union organizing.

In particular, United HERE! wants the workers’ decision regarding union representation to be made by individual employees signing cards, rather than by a secret ballot. That demand should not prevent legislators from approving the compacts, which strike a reasonable balance between labor rights and respect for tribal sovereignty.

This is a microcosm of the national fight over card check, which union bosses want as federal law instead of allowing employees a personal, private vote to decide whether they join a union. Labor leaders know that under card check employees have less information and are thus less likely to turn down union bosses’ generous offers to embezzle and waste their dues money.

Categories: AFL-CIOEnding Secret Ballots