Ohio

Ohio Unions Recruit for Michigan Workplace Freedom Protests

Organizations

The Ohio Civil Service Employees Association (OCSEA) and We Are Ohio are recruiting for December 11 union protests of workplace freedom in Lansing, Michigan. OCSEA, one of Ohio’s largest public employee unions, is an American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) affiliate, and We Are Ohio is a labor campaign committee.

On Friday, December 7, OCSEA posted an update to its Facebook page announcing, “We’ll meet you in Lansing on Tuesday!” The public employee union included a Teamsters image announcing a morning protest of “right-to-work-for-less” at the state capitol on December 11.

Also on Friday, OCSEA posted We Are Ohio’s propaganda comparing Michigan Republicans to the Japanese who bombed Pearl Harbor. Later in the day OCSEA posted We Are Ohio’s dishonest “Right to Work is WRONG” graphic based on outdated data and AFL-CIO talking points.

On Monday, OCSEA posted a link to a “We Are Michigan” day of action against “the worst anti-union legislation Michigan has ever seen.” OCSEA included We Are Ohio’s “WE ARE WITH YOU” graphic depicting Michigan minus the state’s upper peninsula with the protest event link.

As an example of the ever-evolving branding of labor front groups, the “We Are Michigan” Facebook page is currently branded as “Working Michigan.”

Ann Arbor News reported that We Are Michigan will also be protesting the workplace freedom legislation outside Governor Rick Snyder’s home on Monday.

We Are Ohio posted a link to a December 11 Michigan Laborers District Council protest at the Michigan capitol on its Facebook page and sent out a breathless announcement to its mailing list on December 10.

“The attacks on workers’ safety and rights continue in Michigan, but we are standing up for working and middle class families,” wrote We Are Ohio spokesman Dennis Willard in the mass email, which was titled “Rally in Lansing tomorrow to protest attack on safety and rights.”

Repeating We Are Ohio’s dishonest, outdated AFL-CIO talking points, Willard added, “That’s not all. These anti-worker rights and safety states have higher poverty rates because families earn less and have a harder time making ends meet.”

In truly Orwellian fashion, We Are Ohio described giving workers the freedom to choose whether they pay a union boss as an “attack on workers’ safety and rights,” and described workplace freedom states as “anti-worker rights and safety states.”

Under current Ohio and Michigan law, employees in unionized workplaces can be forced to pay union dues as a condition of employment. OCSEA and We Are Ohio profit handsomely from mandatory union dues.

OCSEA and We Are Ohio both routinely portray Ohio’s government employees as an unappreciated victim class, but seem to believe government workers have the free time and flexibility to travel out of state for a protest against workplace freedom.

On Tuesday, Willard, Columbus Education Association “Outstanding Member” Paula Garfield, and other Ohio labor activists will join United Auto Workers protesters trained by communist agitator Lisa Fithian, who was heavily involved in the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The complete message We Are Ohio sent to its email list on December 10 follows.

The attacks on workers’ safety and rights continue in Michigan, but we are standing up for working and middle class families.

Tomorrow, supporters from all across the country are going to Lansing to peacefully rally against the trick-titled, so-called right to work law bullied through the Michigan legislature in about seven hours last week without a single hearing and no public input.

We’re going to show Michigan’s out-of-touch extremist lawmakers what Democracy looks like.

You can find out more by going to this link:

http://www.facebook.com/events/389277347824400/

The only bipartisan vote was in opposition. Republican lawmakers joined Democrats in Michigan to oppose this attack on workers. Sound familiar? In Ohio, when extreme lawmakers and Gov. John Kasich bullied Senate Bill 5, the unfair, unsafe attack on us all, through the Ohio General Assembly, the only bipartisan vote – Republicans and Democrats – was in opposition.

You can help. Please travel to Lansing if you can and if you cannot, please share this link with your friends, family members, co-workers and neighbors.

http://www.facebook.com/events/389277347824400/

Over the weekend, religious leaders came out against the attack on worker rights and safety in Michigan. The CEO of Detroit’s Medical Center came out against the trick-titled, so-called right to work law “because workers in states with these laws have less access to health insurance.”

That’s not all. These anti-worker rights and safety states have higher poverty rates because families earn less and have a harder time making ends meet. Workplace fatalities are 51 percent higher in these anti-worker states. It’s harder to speak up about a workplace safety problem when you have no rights on the job.

Right to work is WRONG for Michigan and it’s WRONG for Ohio.

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