Statement from House Democratic Leader Richard E. Hammel (MT. Morris Township) on Senate Bill 971, which erodes worker protections and collective bargaining rights for some university employees:

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

“House Democrats, in anticipation of the Republicans passing Senate Bill 971, are standing united against yet another attack on Michigan’s working families. The bill in its current form represents bad public policy for employment disputes, graduate assistants and the University of Michigan as whole. “The Michigan Employment Relations Commission has a process in place that has worked for decades to resolve issues around employment and that process should be allowed to continue to decide these kinds of disputes. Instead, SB 971 lets the tail wag the dog by having the legislature make a decision affecting a single employment category rather than having the Legislature setting broad policy and letting the department do the implementation. “In an effort to stop this politically motivated attack on unions and collective bargaining, which does not address any shortcoming in the existing administrative process, House Democrats will not be voting for Immediate Effect on SB 971 and will instead take the necessary parliamentary actions to block Immediate Effect. Without Democratic support, the 62 member Republican caucus cannot meet the 72 vote threshold required to by the Constitution to grant Immediate Effect.”