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Living Wage’ Laws Are Union Lifesavers

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Labor activists across the country are pressing local jurisdictions to dramatically raise the minimum wage. They argue that this is necessary to help workers escape poverty. Often, however, so-called living-wage laws are really devices to revive unions.

Los Angeles became the latest to join the movement when the city council approved a law on Sept. 24 requiring large hotels to pay employees at least $15.37 per hour and provide generous paid sick-leave benefits. But the ordinance includes a provision…that permits unions to waive the requirements in collective bargaining.

This waiver enables labor organizers to approach a nonunion employer struggling to pay the new minimum with the following offer: assist them in unionizing employees by signing a “neutrality agreement,” in return for which the union will use the collective-bargaining waiver to allow the employer to pay less than the new statutory minimum.

While the details of each neutrality agreement vary, they typically obligate the employer to remain silent on the unionization effort, provide union organizers with employees’ personal contact information, and waive the employees’ right to a secret-ballot election administered by the National Labor Relations Board…

We Respond & Your Comments

 Here we go again – another cynical, self-serving union maneuver tarted up as “compassion.”

The unions plead “Just pay these poor souls the ‘living wage’ they deserve so that they can feed their families.”

What they really mean is “Pass a law mandating a ‘living wage’ so we can use it to bludgeon non-union employers into unionizing their businesses by offering them an exemption from it.”

Long Beach, CA, Milwaukee and Seattle recently succumbed to this scam. Could Eugene be far behind?


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