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Right-to-work campaign gets under way

The logo for the Michigan Freedom to Work coalition
Michigan Freedom to Work
The logo for the Michigan Freedom to Work coalition

A coalition that includes some current and former union members wants Michigan to become a so-called “right-to-work” state.

Right-to-work laws prohibit union membership or dues as a condition of employment.

Jack Hoogendyk is a former state lawmaker and a member of Michigan Freedom to Work. He says Michigan would attract more businesses if it weren’t saddled with the reputation as a union stronghold:

"The top five or six states in job growth, in cost-of-living, in per-capita income growth…the top five or six states are right-to-work states, and the bottom five or six are all forced unionism states."

Critics of the campaign call it an attack on middle-class working families. They say solid education systems and a skilled workforce are what create jobs.


Sarah Hulett is Michigan Public's Director of Amplify & Longform, helping reporters to do their best work.