Lately in the news, there has been talk about budget and money crises; these problems have been in many states and most recently in Washington D.C and Wisconsin. Governor of Wisconsin Scott Walker has decided to address these budget predicaments by sharply curtailing the Wisconsin public sector workers collective bargaining rights. The reaction from people in Wisconsin has been mostly negative. However, Governor Walker was right in making cuts in the pay of public sector workers and taking away their right to collective bargaining to help pay off the budget. The state has a $137 million deficit, so curtailing collective bargaining rights will save the state $30 million in the current budget, which ends June first.
Collective bargaining occurs when co-workers negotiate as a group, instead of individually, with employers for an agreement on pay, hours, and other working conditions. The right to do this is found in to state laws in Wisconsin; one covers state workers, and the other covers local school employees. A union is workers joining together to pursue policies and goals beneficial to everyone. A union basically gives workers a say in a workplace’s changing conditions. The unions help democrats’ reelection campaigns; if Governor Walker’s proposed bill is signed into law, the unions in Wisconsin may not be able to financially help the Democratic Party elect their candidates as much as they have in the past. President Obama was a recipient of millions of dollars of contributions from the unions. He has come out in favor of union workers in the matter of this dispute in Wisconsin.
In early February, Scott Walker announced his bill to end collective bargaining. He said that it was to help the budget crises. Instead of responding with cheers, the people, which included school teachers, social workers, and prison guards targeted in this bill faced loss of their collective bargaining. There were state wide school cancellations; teachers would call in sick to take part in the protests. Everyone involved in these demonstrations were all protesting the same issue: the fact that the Governor of Wisconsin was going to take away their rights to collective bargaining; the irony of this is that these protesters weren’t also just from Wisconson, they were being sent in droves from different states to support the union. The fear was that this could happen in their respective states. He says that he needs to take this right away because in the upcoming biannual budget he would be introducing there will be a $3.6 million deficit that will need to be bridged. He believes that it will be essential in order to allow the state to actually balance its budget without laying any workers off (video citation)
The controversy behind this is that the people of Wisconsin believe that if the Governor takes away collective bargaining, he will take away the rights of the people, especially public sector workers, such as teachers and nurses. Governor Walker though is...