Posted Feb. 08, 2011, at 11:46 a.m.
A law proposed in the Legislature would make Maine a “right to work” state, meaning that workers who benefit from union contracts would no longer have some union costs taken from their pay if they are not union members. The logic behind the current law in Maine is that better wages, benefits and working conditions won through union negotiations come at a cost. Those workers who do not join the union but who enjoy the pay and benefits specified in the contract should be expected to pay something toward the effort that landed the agreement. Opponents argue that no one should be forced to join a union and that no one should be forced to pay to support a union’s activities.
Would such a law erode worker rights in Maine? Or would this change make the state’s economy more efficient?