In a telephone press conference with more than a dozen national media outlets, AFL-CIO President Rich Trumka set the record straight on H.R. 2587, the Republican House bill that aims to gut the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) ability to impose sanctions and protect workers from rogue corporations.
Trumka was joined on the call by Pat Bertucci, a third-generation IAM member at Boeing, and University of Texas law professor Jack Getman. Trumka called for an end to the “political and ideological circus” that erupted in the wake of a complaint charging Boeing with retaliation against workers exercising their collective bargaining rights.
Bertucci echoed Trumka’s concerns and expressed a personal reason for opposing the legislation: “I’m not willing to sacrifice a right that goes back generations so that Boeing has an advantage,” said Bertucci. “I’d like to see my daughter have the same opportunity as I did…. If this bill passes, every American’s right to be in a union will be threatened.”
The proposed GOP legislation would take away the NLRB’s authority to remedy unlawful conduct and would apply to cases currently being considered, including the legal action against Boeing. It would allow corporations to freely retaliate against workers by transferring, subcontracting or otherwise relocating work.