Open Shop: When States Realize Change is Needed

By July 27, 2007Labor Unions

USA Today took a look at the economic resiliance of right-to-work states versus those with mandatory union membership in a major package Thursday, using Michigan as a case study.

To regain some of its economic health, Michigan needs to attract different industries, such as alternative fuel production, health care and tourism. But right-to-work proponents say the strong union presence keeps new industry away. A weaker union base would help attract more businesses, they argue.

“We’ve got to do something bold, something dramatic,” says Lawrence Reed, president of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a conservative think tank in Michigan that promotes business interests. “This is the one best thing that can break the perception around the country that Michigan doesn’t have a friendly work environment. Nothing would do that better than a right-to-work initiative.”

The Mackinac Center has a right-to-work FAQ available here.

We recall that CNBC’s ratings of the “Top State for Business” featured five right-to-work states as the top five. Companies, manufacturers, investors — they’re all voting with their feet.

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