With all the talk of stimulus packages to create jobs, some are balking at the cost of these measures - and rightfully so. Yet we must do something to turn the tide on increasing unemployment, especially considering the announcement from DWD that unemployment jumped a full point from November to December, reaching 8.2 percent.
What if I told you we could boost job growth immediately in Indiana without spending one red cent? Passing right-to-work legislation this year would attract business from every direction, moving or expanding from non-right-to-work states to the more business-friendly environment in which workers are free to deny union membership.
We are missing a fantastic opportunity. More than one-third of businesses do not even consider non-right-to-work states in their site-selection process. When Oklahoma became the 22nd right-to-work state in 2001, it moved within months from below average to number one in job growth. Indiana is even better positioned to capitalize on this opportunity because it would be the only right-to-work state in the Great Lakes region.
Right-to-work is about protecting liberty and freedom for every Hoosier worker.
It protects the individual's right to not join a union. No forced membership. No mandatory dues. No Hoosier workers being forced from jobs because they don't support unions.
What's more, Indiana has the added bonus of exceptional roadways, with more planned through Major Moves. Right-to-work legislation coupled with a solid transportation network creates an ideal situation for optimal job growth.
Rep. Randy Borror and I have authored a right-to-work bill this year, House Bill 1324, because we believe this law could do great things for Indiana. Opposition from union bosses will be strong; however, right-to-work does not threaten unions. A right-to-work law merely protects the workers' freedom to opt out of union membership without consequence.
It's one cost-free way we can boost Indiana's economy and job growth immediately, and we can do it without burdening future generations of Hoosiers. The time to act is now. I encourage people to learn more about the benefits of right-to-work laws by viewing my PowerPoint presentation at www.in.gov/h39 .
We cannot afford to miss this perfect opportunity.