Saturday, March 28, 2009

Like eating a pound of chocolate

One of the ideas floating around about how to "fix" EFCA so that it is more palatable to one or two Republican Senators and some "liberal" "progressive" "vehemently anti-union" business owners is the idea that unions would be allowed equal access to the workplace when conducting organizing drives.

This sounds like a good idea, but is not. Let me tell you why.

1. It solidifies the "captive audience" meetings that we are currently fighting against. We think these are bad things. The employer should not be allowed to force its workers to go to propaganda meetings as part of their employment. We mean this for anti-union meetings, political meetings, religious meetings, or anything else. When the employer buys eight hours of work, that's what they buy, not eight hours of someone's life.

2. "Equal" means whatever the employer wants it to mean. The meetings with union organizers will be held in the basement, with no coffee, no donuts at 8:45 am on Monday. The meeting with the bosses will be held in the conference room with coffee, danish, and maybe, for those Friday afternoon meetings, with beer.

3. No matter how much time the union is given, it will not be equal. The union might have half-an-hour. The employer has the next seven-and-a-half hours in the day. We cannot win the captive audience game, so we shouldn't play it.

It is not a level playing field now and never will be, we shouldn't make it easy for the bosses to pretend like it is.

No comments: