230313 H B 4005 MI Senate
March 13, 2023
March 13, 2023
To the Members of the Michigan Senate:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce (Chamber) opposes H.B. 4005, which would upend labor law in Michigan by eliminating the state’s right-to-work protection. The Chamber believes that retaining Michigan’s landmark right-to-work law would benefit workers in the state by preserving their right to choose for themselves whether to join or support a labor union.
Today, a majority of states (27) maintain right-to-work statutes, and Michigan has benefited from its own law since it took effect in 2013. Being a right-to-work state makes Michigan more competitive with neighboring states and nationally. It helps Michigan compete for much-needed economic development projects and new jobs. Put simply, if a company is choosing between a site in a right-to-work state and another in a state without the same policy in place, that factor often positively influences the decision. Repealing right-to-work would be a step backward for the state and hardworking Michiganders.
Moreover, Michigan’s right-to-work law is not “anti-union” as critics argue, and, in fact, according to the Michigan AFL-CIO “union membership in Michigan grew by nearly 50,000 in 2022,” notwithstanding the state’s right-to-work statute. Contrary to the rhetoric, this law simply gives workers the freedom to choose whether to join a labor union in the workplace. While the Chamber is proud to have both unionized and non-unionized employers among its members, we believe that no worker should be forced to join a labor organization they may not support just to keep their job. As evidenced by the growth in membership, if unions demonstrate their value proposition, workers will join them. Michigan’s right-to-work law gives them the ability to make that choice freely, but H.B. 4005 would strip them of that right.
The Chamber believes that H.B. 4005 is a fundamentally bad policy proposal, and we urge you not to support the bill.
Neil L. Bradley
Executive Vice President, Chief Policy Officer,
and Head of Strategic Advocacy
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
 Michigan AFL-CIO. (January 20, 2023). Union Membership in Michigan Grows Despite Decades of Anti-Union Policy [Press Release]. Available at https://miaflcio.org/union-membership-in-michigan-grows-despite-decades-of-anti-union-policy/