Vernuccio Quoted on UAW Bullying in The Detroit News

Coverage of intimidation by UAW local

Several news outlets, including The Detroit News, recently covered an instance of union bullying first reported by Michigan Capitol Confidential. Local 412 of the United Auto Workers published in its newsletter the names of employees who have chosen to exercise their right to not belong to a union — as allowed by Michigan’s right-to-work law. In addition to printing nonmembers’ names, the union also urged remaining members not to “share any tools, knowledge or support for any of these employees who choose not to pay their fair share.”

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The Detroit News published an article on the issue January 1 and quoted the Mackinac Center for Public Policy’s Director of Labor Policy F. Vincent Vernuccio:

“Pure and simple: It’s intimidation,” said Vincent Vernuccio, director of labor policy for conservative think tank the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

“They’re doing it because they want to incite other union members to pressure those who have exercise their right to start paying the union again.

“It’s a bullying tactic. There’s nothing else to it.”

The News also mentioned the Center’s solution to the free/forced rider issue raised by the union.

Prior to Michigan becoming a “right-to-work” state, UAW members were allowed to opt out of the union but still had to pay agency fees to cover the cost of collective bargaining. Now, they can opt out and they continue to receive many of the benefits negotiated by the union.

Vernuccio said the Mackinac Center for Public Policy would like Michigan to adjust the legislation to include what it calls “worker’s choice.” It would free unions from representing those who do not want to pay them and would allow workers to represent themselves. The organization argues it would not change collective bargaining in any other way.

“It would let workers represent themselves,” Vernuccio said. “It’s very simple legislation.”

Other outlets, including ABC 7 in Detroit and the conservative blog Instapundit, also covered the UAW’s most recent instance of bullying.


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