Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

To Join or Not to Join? That is the (Right-to-Work) Question

jimwaters6KENTUCKY (7/3/14) — Tis the season to celebrate America’s independence and recent Supreme Court decisions.

Last week, we praised the Kentucky Supreme Court’s ruling prohibiting unelected bureaucrats from enforcing smoking bans on private property while giving elected officials a pass on a controversial policy.

This week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Harris v Quinn that homecare providers are not state employees and cannot be forced to pay union dues.

The ludicrousness leading to this case originates in Illinois, which forced parents providing care for their severely disabled children in their home to pay union dues via executive orders by former governor-turned-prison-inmate Rod Blagojevich and Pat Quinn, his political heir. (What is it about chief executives from Illinois using their pens to trump the law?)

Their Caesar-like edicts resulted in labeling homecare providers as “state employees” and unionizing them, which led to union dues being extracted from their already-small mostly Medicare stipends.

Pam Harris, who cares for her severely disabled adult son at home, sued Quinn because she believes that “not a penny of Medicaid funding intended to help provide care for disabled men and women should be taken away and given to the union.”

Harris and her fellow “workers” didn’t even get a choice of which union to join. They were “assigned” to the Service International Employees Union, which reaped up to $20 million in new money because of this scheme.

The SEIU in its reaction to the court’s ruling claimed that the unionization of homecare providers “has proven successful in raising wages, providing affordable health care benefits, and increasing training.”

The question follows: If the union provides such tremendous benefits, why does it need unconstitutional edicts from a felonious governor and his political descendant forcing people to join?

Even if the SEIU provided such benefits, Harris did not believe it was in her best interest to join the union and allow dues to be extracted from the precious resources used to care for her son.

It may be President Obama’s default position to get out his pen when Congress doesn’t do what he wants and unions to revert to forcing homecare providers like Harris to pay dues anyhow – even when they decide union membership isn’t in their best interest or they don’t agree with the political propaganda the $20 million in extra cash helps the SEIU propagate.

However, it’s not what this nation’s founders intended.

They intended for each individual American’s freedom to determine his own path in life – including whether or not to labor under the banner of union membership.

That’s why along with some flag waving, I’ve been celebrating the First Amendment, which protects your right to speak your mind, worship where you choose and associate with whom you wish.

It’s also why Kentucky needs a right-to-work law.

“The right to associate also inherently carries with it the right not to associate,” Brendan Cole, executive director of the Kentucky Right to Work Committee, said. “In the same way, right-to-work policies protect workers’ rights and freedoms concerning whether or not to join and otherwise support labor unions.”

The Court in its Harris ruling came close to fully implementing right-to-work protections for all government workers. It certainly left the door open for such a ruling in the future.

Lawmakers in Frankfort don’t need to wait on of black-robed justices in Washington to provide such freedom for public workers. They can, and should, move forward for all Kentucky workers – public and private – with the Bluegrass State’s own right-to-work policy.

Jim Waters is president of the Bluegrass Institute, Kentucky’s free-market think tank. Reach him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Read previously published columns at www.bipps.org.

Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Posted on 2/2/14
3/13 - 16
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
button coupons

Stock Report

1 DOW 17,356.87
+288.00 (1.69%)    
2 S&P 2,012.89
+40.15 (2.04%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,644.31
+96.48 (2.12%)    
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
button classifieds
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week

December 16, 2014 8716

Coal Miner Fatally Injured in Underground Mining…

in Top News For All Sites by Dick Brown
December 14, 2014 8240

Muhlenberg Pays Homage to U.S. Armed Forces

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 12, 2014 7805

Man Allegedly Threatening Medical Staff with…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Wes Miller
December 17, 2014 4790

Elderly Couple Found Shot to Death in Muhlenberg

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 11, 2014 4694

Muhlenberg District Court Fines Handed Down

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 15, 2014 4649

Hopkins County Woman Charged Second Time in Two…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 17, 2014 4644

Three Men Charged with Burglary

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 12, 2014 4511

Man Allegedly Hits Brother with Pickup Truck…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Wesley Miller
December 11, 2014 4245

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Dec. 11, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
December 15, 2014 4202

Woman Leads Police on High-Speed Chase in Stolen…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police

Stories Trending Today

December 16, 2014 8716

Coal Miner Fatally Injured in Underground Mining…

in Top News For All Sites by Dick Brown
December 17, 2014 4790

Elderly Couple Found Shot to Death in Muhlenberg

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 17, 2014 4644

Three Men Charged with Burglary

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 16, 2014 2699

Highway Crews Pre-Treating Roadways for Potential…

in Hopkins News by Keith Todd
December 16, 2014 2657

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Dec. 16, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
December 15, 2014 2544

Rich Brings Old, New Together in New Album

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 16, 2014 2478

Muhlenberg Community Hospital Installs Biometric…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Erin Warren
December 15, 2014 2344

Dawson Springs Police Reports Released

in Hopkins News by Melissa Heflin
December 16, 2014 2341

KFWC Proposes 2015-2016 Deer Season Dates and…

in General News For All Sites by Department of Fish and Wildlife
December 16, 2014 2168

Galloway, Director of Provider Services MCH,…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Karen Robinson

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss