Protests greet Mich. 'right-to-work' bill

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: AFL-CIO says workers in right-to-work states get less pay, fewer benefits
  • They oppose the governor's move to pass the legislation
  • The bill would limit workers' rights to strike and to picket
  • The legislature is planning to work through the weekend

(CNN) -- Thousands of people protested "right-to-work" legislation in and around Michigan's Capitol in Lansing, leading authorities to block entrance to the building, police said Thursday.

The capacity of the building had been exceeded, Michigan State Police Inspector Gene Adamczyk said.

The protesters were focused on a push by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder to seek "right-to-work" status for the state.
Under the bill, the right to strike and picket would be limited.

Adamczyk said "a couple of thousand people" were inside the Capitol and 1,000 to 2,000 or more were in the area.

One of the troopers used pepper spray against a protester who was among a group attempting to rush the state Senate chambers, Adamczyk said.

MSP spokeswoman Shannon Banner said eight people were taken into custody and face potential charges of assault and/or disobeying a lawful order from state police.

Some 50 Michigan state troopers were on the grounds and officers from the Lansing Police Department were patrolling the area.

In a video posted on his website, Snyder said he preferred to refer to the bill as "workplace fairness and equity" because "it's about being pro-worker and giving workers the freedom to choose whom they associate with."

He said the bill would also strengthen Michigan's competitive position relative to its neighbor, Indiana, which has already passed such a bill.

But Michigan State AFL-CIO President Karla Swift, in a statement posted on the United Auto Workers' website, said workers in right-to-work states make an average of $1,500 less per year and are less likely to have pensions or health care benefits.

"The growth rate for right-to-work states before they adopted such policies is actually higher than the growth rate for these states after they adopted these laws," she said.

Inside the Capitol, the Republican governor told reporters that the bills were introduced during Thursday's lame-duck session and that the legislature would proceed with the legislation for public and private employees, excluding police and firefighters.

The House was planning to meet Friday and over the weekend, days when it does not usually do business.

If Bill No. 4054 passes, it would go to the state Senate floor.

The GOP controls both the House and Senate.

CNN's John Fricke and Tom Watkins contributed to this report

0
Comments »
  • Print
  • Email
  • More sharing
Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Capitalbay. Capitalbay accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.
What's next
By CapitalBay Online 12/06/2012 15:05:00

ENTERTAINMENT

Kate Wright instagrams crazy weekend in Ibiza with pals

Kate Wright, Danielle Armstrong in sexy bikinis as they instagram crazy weekend in Ibiza.

Celebrity Big Brother fans take to Twitter after 'scripted' moment seen live feed

As the latest series of Celebrity Big Brother prepares for its splashy finale on Friday night, fans are accusing TV bosses of staging parts of

Lindsay Lohan flashes emerald engagement ring after split from Egor Tarabasov

She's alleged to have pressed 'pause' on her engagement to fiancé Egor Tarabasov following a series of public fights. And after showing off her sparkler on

Outrage over nude production of Shakespeare's The Tempest in NYC park

Torn Out Theater company is set to perform a nude, all-female, production of Shakespeare's final play next month in Brooklyn's Prospect Park Some parents are upset

Models take to the catwalk in full-face scarfs at New Zealand Fashion Week

New Zealand Fashion Week runs from August 26 to 28 Label Jarrad Godman showcased their designs on the catwalk on  Tuesday The models wore statement face scarves

#StandWithLeslie: Katy Perry and Ghostbusters director Paul Feig join fans in supporting Leslie Jones after a hacker posted nude photos of the comedian on her personal website

Fans and stars defend Leslie Jones after she was hacked on Wednesday Nude pictures of the comedian were published on her personal website  People on began using

'A drunk, a liar and a slut' - Birth of a Nation director was accused of dragging co-ed's name through the mud in racially-charged rape trial defense

Nate Parker is director and writer of The Birth of A Nation, which he also stars in, and had been heavily tipped for Oscar success  But

Recent Comments