Editorial: Union organizing helps the economy

The labor movement’s nationwide drive to get a minimum of 1 million signatures in support of the Employee Free Choice Act is close to the 75 percent mark. It has caught on like wildfire.

In less than six months, almost 750,000 people have signed cards to tell the next president and Congress that workers want them to enact the EFCA.

This is good news because it is only possible to turn America around if we take an indispen-sable first step. That first step is to restore the free choice of working people to come together in unions and bargain for better wages and benefits and a real voice on the job.

The EFCA, which requires employers to recognize a union as soon as a majority of their workers sign cards indicating they want that representation, will do precisely that. Enactment of the bill will end company-rigged “elections,” mandatory anti-union propaganda sessions and harassment and firing of workers who support union organizing drives.

Existing labor law does not offer these protections. The attack on unions has resulted in stagnating wages, spiraling prices and massive joblessness while CEO salaries and corporate profits soar.

With less and less money in the hands of the majority, less of what is produced can be purchased, and the whole capitalist economy breaks down, hurting millions of people in its wake.

The right wing is working overtime to kill the EFCA. The business lobby is running TV ads warning people that enactment would mean loss of their right to vote in secret. This is nonsense. People join organizations by signing up for them. Why should it be any different for joining a union? The anti-EFCA campaign is nothing more than the fat cats wanting to hold onto their power, their tax breaks and their government handouts while they pay the rest of us as little as possible.

Unions don’t get either the tax breaks or the government handouts that big business and Wall Street financiers get. Restoring the right of the majority of our people to choose unions will restore fairness and it will restore the balance our economy needs so that it can actually work for everyone, rather than the privileged few.