LANSING, Mich. -- Michigan’s state capitol building will remain open to citizen demonstrations after workers filed suit and won a temporary injunction against arbitrary closure of the building during massive protests against anti-worker, anti-family legislation supported by Gov. Rick Snyder.
About 3,000 demonstrators were inside and around the Capitol today, protesting Gov. Snyder’s plan to push a radical change in Michigan’s labor laws through the legislature with little advance notice and no public hearing. Michigan State Police responded by closing the building, shutting citizens out of the legislative process.
A number of Michigan workers, insisting on their right to petition their own elected officials, filed a lawsuit in Ingham County Circuit Court this morning. They won an injunction this afternoon from Judge Joyce Draganchuk. Her order specifies that state authorities must stop denying access to “the democratic process.”
In spite of this, the state House rushed a Right to Work bill through to passage without so much as a committee hearing. No amendments were permitted and no real discussion took place.
In states with “right-to-work-for-less” laws, a typical worker earns $1,500 less per year than in states with free collective bargaining. Legislative interference with collective bargaining also typically leads to lower health insurance benefits, inferior pension coverage, and higher workplace fatalities.