Originally posted Mar 03, 2012
More than 1,000 AFSCME members, labor allies and community activists rallied outside the Arizona Legislature yesterday to protest four anti-worker bills targeted squarely on state and local public service workers. Two weeks ago, Ariz. lawmakers passed a bill that would put an undue burden on unions and other organizations to collect dues and donations from members. Although the remaining three bills appeared dead, even lacking support from Gov. Jan Brewer, anti-worker legislators brought the zombie, anti-worker bills back from the dead this week.
Demonstrators rallied for workers’ rights and against the influence of the corporate-run organizations—the American Legislative Exchange Council and the Goldwater Institute—that have outsized political influence in the Grand Canyon State. AFSCME members joined with our sisters and brothers from the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, the Communications Workers of America, the International Association of Machinists, UNITE HERE and the United Steelworkers in opposing the bills.
One of the zombie bills passed by the Senate this week would end release time for all public service workers except for police officers. The final two pieces of undead legislation are languishing in the legislative process. The bill to completely ban collective bargaining between public service workers and state and local governments appears likely to fail. A piece of paycheck deception legislation, however, could reach the governor’s desk. AFSCME activists will continue to apply pressure to keep these bad ideas from becoming bad laws.