CHARLESTON – In an unsurprising but still highly disappointing move, the state Supreme Court today upheld a law created solely to undermine and weaken unions in their efforts to protect workers and represent workers’ rights.
“Circuit Judge Bailey had rightfully ruled that the so-called ‘Right to Work’ act clearly violates the West Virginia Constitutional rights of unions and individuals with regard to the illegal taking of their property,” West Virginia AFL-CIO President Josh Sword said. “This law has been the centerpiece of a years-long, partisan-driven agenda by the anti-worker majority to lower wages and benefits and eliminate workplace safety regulations – all in order to place corporate profits far above the health and safety of West Virginia workers, which is shameful particularly in light of the current pandemic we’re facing.”
“That this state Supreme Court, the product of scandal, corruption and an unprecedented impeachment process, would uphold such a law is very disappointing yet not at all surprising,” Sword continued. “In fact, this court broke their own protocol by not notifying us that a ruling had been made and was being released to the press and public.
“I ask: How political and shady has this court become when the parties in a high-profile appeal are only notified of a decision through reporters and social media?!”
Sword said the labor unions in West Virginia will continue to operate as they have since the Supreme Court lifted the injunction on the law in 2017 and continue fighting for the health, well being and safety of all West Virginia working families.
“As always, we will continue to negotiate for fair wages, good benefits and a safe workplace,” Sword said. “In 2020, we will work harder than ever to ensure that those who pushed for and supported this legislation, and any other laws that hurt working families, are voted out of office.”