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Workplace Issues Today: Ohio bill could pass as early as today

In Ohio, the senate labor committee is expected to vote on a bill Wednesday that would cut collective bargaining rights of public sector workers and end their right to strike. The supporters of the bill say that it is necessary to give local government flexibility when dealing with their budgets, and that the cuts are necessary to balance the budget. However, opponents of the bill say that the proposed changes go farther than the budget, and are an attack on workers’ rights. If the bill is approved, it could be voted on this week, and would then move to the House. Republicans have majorities in both houses, and Ohio laws make it impossible for Democrats to leave the state like the Wisconsin Senators. Around 100 pages of amendments have been introduced for the bill, which would restore bargaining for wages. The hearing will continue on Wednesday as the senators review the amendments. Around 8,000 protesters against the bill were in the capital on Tuesday.

See “Ohio committee to vote on bill to end state workers strike rights,” by Mary Wisniewski, Reuters, Mar 02 2011 (SD)

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