The Employee Free Choice Act and right-to-work states

As we have stated in previous posts, the EFCA would dramatically overhaul the National Labor Relations Act, specifically by allowing for easier routes to unionization through card-check procedures and by foregoing secret ballot elections.

Should the EFCA be passed, this poses an interesting question: what effect will this have on right-to-work states?

Right to work laws, which are currently in effect in 22 states, prohibit unions from making membership in the union or payment of union dues a condition of employment, either before or after hire.

Generally speaking, right-to-work states are composed mainly of southern states. These states have constantly sought more and more manufacturing jobs from northeastern states, selling companies on their lower unionization rates and lower cost of living. This strategy has paid off as more and more of these jobs have migrated south in recent decades, paving the way for increased economic strength of southern states.

As some of our readers point out, the EFCA, as a federal law, would not change right-to-work laws in those states; however it begs the question, should the EFCA lead to increased unionization rates as expected, will this lead to increased unionization rates in right-to-work states?

This is a situation worth watching, because the EFCA could have a dramatic ripple effect throughout much of the country.

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