Yesterday, as reported by the Rocky Mountain News, ballots were mailed out to 21,000 Colorado state employees for the purposes of choosing exclusive representation. Workers vote yes to be represented by the Colorado WINS labor coalition or vote no to keep the status quo and the right to represent themselves if they so choose.
Unfortunately, the Rocky ended their story with a misleading statement:
[Gov. Bill] Ritter has emphasized that his order bans strikes, prohibits binding arbitration and bars unions from charging dues to nonmembers.
It makes you wonder whether Bill Ritter has read his own executive order. The order does not bar unions from charging dues to nonmembers – it leaves the door open to coercive fees being charged on non-members through private bargaining negotiations. I’ve read the order many times: trust me, it isn’t there. At least one national labor expert who read the order strongly noted the danger of this omission.
But you are welcome to look through every jot and tittle of Bill Ritter’s order to find the non-existent prohibition on collecting fees from non-members.
Ballots are likely to start arriving at workers’ homes today, with a deadline of June 10 to return them. It is a majority of ballots cast, not a majority of workers, that will determine the election. Workers who would otherwise vote No but choose not to participate make it easier for the unions to win exclusive representation power.
You can learn more about Bill Ritter’s executive order and its many problems through a number of sources I’ve written or recorded for the Independence Institute:
– Denver Post commentary
– iVoices podcast
– 2-page issue brief
– Full-length issue paper