Guest Column by Lorri Pickens
On Monday, I was pleased to announce the launch of Wisconsin Right to Work (WRTW), a grassroots organization dedicated to advancing freedom in the workplace. I will serve as its first Executive Director. Our primary goal is to ensure that all individuals, whether or not they choose to join a union, have the same benefits, rights and protections.
A Wisconsin-based organization, WRTW has no national affiliations and will advocate for Right to Work reforms through citizen engagement. We believe now is the time to engage our citizens in a meaningful dialogue with opinion leaders and policy makers.
Wisconsin’s public employees’ strong desire for their right to choose is evidenced by the sharp decline in enrollment in teacher unions following the passage of the ACT 10 collective bargaining reforms. Wisconsin Right to Work believes private sector workers should have the same right to choose.
The benefits of giving all Wisconsin workers the freedom of choice extends beyond the freedom itself. Right to Work states enjoy faster job growth, lower unemployment rates and higher per capita income than non-Right to Work States.
Simply put, our economic future depends on workforce and labor reforms. As Wisconsin residents age out of the workforce, Wisconsin employers will rely, in part, on a young and educated pool of professionals. Yet between 2008 and 2012, Wisconsin lost on average 14,000 college graduates, while Right to Work states saw an increase of 11.3 percent in workers aged 25-34 over an eight year period.