In a major victory for labor unions, Michigan on Friday became the first state in more than half a century to repeal a right-to-work law.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation passed by the Democratic-controlled Legislature, overturning a 2012 GOP law that allowed workers to choose not to join unions or pay union dues as a condition of employment, even if the union represents them in negotiations.
...The anti-union law’s repeal is a particularly significant symbolic victory given the special place Michigan holds in the organized labor movement.
“For us, being the home of labor and getting attacked 10 years ago was a gut punch to workers across Michigan,” state Sen. Darrin Camilleri, the sponsor of MI SB34 (23R), told POLITICO. “We are a state so steeped in union activism and union history that we knew this was a policy that our constituents wanted for the last 10 years as well.”
Even with the move, more than half the states in the country have right-to-work laws on the books. The Michigan Legislature’s repeal is the first since Indiana did so in 1965, before reverting in 2012. (Missouri voters in 2018 blocked a right-to-work law passed by Republican lawmakers.)