By: Tom Hebert
The $3.5 trillion spending blowout announced by Senate Democrats will include the job-killing “Protecting the Right to Organize Act,” according to media reports.
The PRO Act would benefit Big Labor at the expense of the American worker. The PRO Act’s inclusion in the spending blowout gives further insight into the Senate Democrats’ proposal, the details of which are below:
- The PRO Act nullifies Right to Work laws across the country, which protect 166 million Americans in 27 states. Right to Work laws prevent employers from being able to force workers to join a union as a condition of employment. If Right to Work laws were banned, every American worker would be forced to choose between paying a union boss and putting food on the table.
- The PRO Act enacts a stringent three-step test that would force independent contractors to reclassify as W-2 employees. This would jeopardize the livelihoods of the more than 59 million Americans that engage in freelance work.
- Codify the NLRB’s disastrous 2015 Browning-Ferris Industries decision that muddled the definition of “joint-employer,” overturning decades of labor law precedent. If implemented, this would decimate the franchise business model that employs 7.6 million Americans in 733,000 locations.
- Change union elections to allow union bosses to collect cards from workers to demonstrate support for the union, rather than holding a secret ballot election. If labor bosses fail to unionize a workplace via a secret ballot election, the union can appeal to the NLRB for a second chance to unionize the workplace.
- Violate worker privacy by forcing employers to give union organizers sensitive employee contact information, including home addresses, cell phone, shift information and landline numbers, and email addresses. This would allow union bosses to intimidate workers into joining unions at homes or workplaces.
In addition, the PRO Act would increase costs for employers, harming businesses and consumers. According to the American Action Forum, the independent contractor provision would impact 8.5% of GDP and cost between $3.5 billion and $12.1 billion annually. The joint employer provision would cost between $17.2 billion and $33.3 billion annually for the franchise business sector and affect 44% of private sector employees. Finally, the provision that restricts employers from replacing strikers permanently could cost employers an additional $1.9 billion every year.
The PRO Act is a return on the investment of the hundreds of millions of dollars that Big Labor poured into the Democrat party’s campaigns to capture the House, Senate, and White House. Employers will be able to force workers into unions as a condition of employment, and union bosses will have access to personal information to bully workers into compliance. Tens of millions of independent contractors would face losing their jobs.