Fordham Law

Chamber of Commerce, Unionbuster vs. Pope, Catholic Bishops on Union Rights

Feerick Center in the Huffington Post, June 22, 2009

Media Source

While the Chamber of Commerce continues its smear campaign against the Employee Free Choice Act, the union movement enlisted a powerful ally yesterday in its drive for workers' rights: the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, following the guidance of, yes, the Pope.

As the AFL-CIO blog noted:

    The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has announced a new step forward for workers at Catholic health facilities: a set of principles to ensure that workers have a fair process to bargain for a better life.

    In "Respecting the Just Rights of Workers: Guidance and Options for Catholic Health Care and Unions," the USCCB, in cooperation with Catholic health care providers and the union movement, has laid out guidelines for Catholic health care ministries across the country.

    These guidelines, and the process that produced them, are an encouraging model of cooperation and collaboration in protecting workers' freedom to form unions and bargain.

    The new guidelines cover seven principles for employers when workers seek a union:

    * Respect;
    * Access to information;
    * Truthful communication;
    * Pressure-free environment;
    * Expeditious process;
    * Honoring employee decisions; and
    * Meaningful enforcement of these principles.