So-Called 'Right To Work' is Wrong for New Mexico

Despite the various attempts from wealthy corporations, New Mexico has stood strong against So-Called “Right to Work” legislation and its attempts to limit the power of working people.

What are So-Called ‘Right to Work’ laws? And why do they matter to labor?

So-Called “Right to Work” laws prohibit union membership as a term of employment. These laws allow low-skilled and untrained tradesmen and tradeswomen to gain employment and enjoy the benefits of the collective bargaining process without paying their fair share of fees to pay for representation.

The purpose of these dangerous laws is to drive down labor costs and take any collective bargaining power away from labor unions.

Recognizing the harm that So-Called “Right to Work” laws bring to working people and their families, the Associated Press reported in 2019 that New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed legislation prohibiting localities from enacting So-Called “Right to Work” laws.

The only New Mexico workers that have the ability to opt out of paying union fees are government workers. The Janus v. AFSCME case argued in the Supreme Court in 2018 led to a decision where the conservative majority decided that government employees cannot be required to pay “fair share” fees for the collective bargaining services they enjoy.

Southwest Pipe Trades Association and the United Association strongly oppose So-Called ‘Right to Work’ laws

The SWPTA and our affiliated Local Unions and member contractors are entirely against these laws as they create an unsafe workplace and encourage the use of unskilled, low wage labor.

By allowing corporate interests and So-Called “Right to Work” legislation to gain steam in New Mexico would show blatant disregard for the safety of pipe trades tradesmen and tradeswomen.

All SWPTA affiliated Local Unions and member contractors fully fund the United Association registered apprenticeship program. This program is designed to thoroughly teach apprentices entering the pipe trades latest safety protocols as well as ensure that they earn all requisite certifications necessary to ensure that they stay safe and free from injury each and every jobsite on which they work.

All members of SWPTA affiliated unions are required to carry at least an Occupational Safety and Health Administration 10-hour (OSHA-10) training card on job sites to prove they have completed the course. Other projects may require further safety training, which is always fully funded by the UA.

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