Dingell Stands Up for Workers Rights, House Passes PRO Act
Washington, February 6, 2020
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI) stood up for workers’ rights and voted for the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act which protects the basic right for workers to join a union.
Dingell is a cosponsor of the PRO Act, the most significant upgrade to U.S. labor law in 80 years. It is a direct response to the struggle that many hardworking families are facing to keep pace with the rising costs of education, child care, housing, and other basic essentials.
“Unions fought for all of us to have a forty hour work week, healthcare benefits, time off, safe work place and many more critical benefits,” said Dingell. “When unions are strong, all workers benefit. We must strengthen workers’ right to join a union and have a voice.”
Research consistently shows that workers who are represented by unions earn higher pay, have safer workplaces, and are more likely to have employer-sponsored health care and retirement plans. But, after decades of attacks on workers’ right to organize funded by wealthy special interests, just ten percent of American workers are union members, the lowest rate on record.
The decline in union membership has coincided with a rise in income inequality. Over the past three decades, as union density declined from its peak of more than 30 percent in the 1970s, the average income for the bottom 90 percent of families stayed the same, while average incomes for the wealthiest one percent nearly doubled.
The PRO Act:
• Introduces meaningful, enforceable penalties for companies and executives that violate workers’ rights;
• Protects and expands workers’ power to stand together and negotiate for bigger paychecks, better benefits, and safer working conditions, and closes loopholes that corporations use to exploit workers; and
• Strengthens workers’ access to fair union elections and requires corporations to respect the results.
More information on the PRO Act is available here.
Dingell is a passionate advocate for protecting American workers and the labor movement. Dingell has made fighting for a solution to the pension crisis a top priority since coming to Congress, including passing the Butch Lewis Act to ensure multi-employer pension plans remain solvent and continue providing retirees and workers with the retirement benefits they have earned.