Worker Rights Measure Advances at Statehouse

Denver -- A bill that would prohibit discriminatory or coercive workplace practices that often prevail under "union shop rules" passed the Senate Business Labor and Technology Committee today on a 5-4 vote.

Authored by State Senator Tim Neville (R-Littleton), SB-70 makes it a misdemeanor for any employer to require an employee to associate with, pay dues to, or become a member of a labor union. It does not ban or bar unions, but simply prohibits discriminate against any worker declining to join one.

"This is simply about freedom in the workplace, and the ability of an individual to not have to join a union in order to get a job," said Neville. "It also gives workers the freedom to join a union, but only if they elect to. It’s about freedom of association, which is one of the basic tenants of our Bill of Rights."

Neville also points to evidence showing that states that embrace such policies generally have stronger economies than those that don't. That Colorado doesn’t proactively ensure worker freedom, by legally prohibiting such forms of workplace discrimination, could be costing it jobs and economic growth, said Neville.

SB-70 next moves to the committee of the whole for debate and action.

Please contact Sean Paige at 719-337-0355 with media inquiries.

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