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RNs send against Snyder’s ‘Right to Work’

nurses protest


Staff report

Standing silent on the steps of the state Capitol with duct tape covering their mouths Dec. 10, registered nurses who are members of the Michigan Nurses Association protested Gov. Rick Snyder’s so-called “Right to Work” law.

It’s symbolic of how the governor’s attack on workers will stop nurses from speaking out at work so they can keep their patients safe from corporations and CEOs that care only about profits, the Association press release reported.

“Nurses are outraged at Gov. Snyder’s war on workers, knowing that the wounds he is inflicting on our state will hurt for decades to come,” said Katie Oppenheim, a registered nurse from Ann Arbor who spoke for the nurses. “Our union is our voice in the workplace, and nurses use that voice every single day to keep patients safe against corporations that only care about their profits. Gov. Snyder and CEOs are using ‘Right to Work’ to shut workers up, pure and simple.”

Nurses were at the Capitol on Dec. 6 with thousands of others as the Legislature rushed “Right to Work” bills through in one day, despite Gov. Snyder saying for months that he did not want to see that legislation. The governor has now said he will sign RTW into law — an abrupt change that came after the intervention of the Chamber of Commerce and millionaire CEOs like Dick DeVos.

In “right to work” states, all workers — both union and nonunion — make an average of $1,500 less per year and are less likely to have family-supporting health insurance and pensions. The nurses said. “Right to work” laws do not lead to economic growth and do not ensure any “freedoms” for workers, who already cannot be forced to join a union.

The Michigan Nurses Association represents nearly 11,000 members statewide, advocating for them and their patients.


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