Virginia has enjoyed great economic prosperity over the past decades and has been named the best state for business numerous times, but their economy may be in danger since the Democrat-controlled legislature has been pushing the idea of repealing the state’s right-to-work law. Legislation has advanced through the House Labor and Commerce Committee in Richmond.
Virginia’s current right-to-work law provides that no individual will be forced to join a labor union or pay fees to a labor union to work in the place of his or her choice.
According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2017 union members only accounted for 4.6 percent of wage and salary workers in Virginia.
The states that border Virginia including all have right-to-work laws. Repealing Virginia’s right-to-work law would put existing and future employees at a great disadvantage compared to Virginia’s neighboring states.
The National Institute for Labor Relations Research found in 2019 that the percentage growth in number of people employed in right-to-work states was 10.8%, compared to 5% in forced-unionism states. This same study also showed that the growth in number of residents aged 35-54 was 1.5% in right-to-work states, well forced-unionism states actually lost 7.9% of their residents in that age group.
Right-to-work laws are not anti-union. Rather, they are freedom of association, which is the foundation that a union’s right to organize is based.
Repealing this law would be a hit to Virginia’s economy and forcing workers to join or pay dues to a union just to get or keep a job is not logical.