October 15, 2019

October 15, 2019

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

October 14, 2019

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

West Virginia Becomes 26th Right-to-Work State

West Virginia will now join 25 other states which have adopted right-to-work legislation preventing private employers from requiring workers to pay union dues as a condition of employment. West Virginia lawmakers passed the measure in early February, but Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin vetoed the measure. However, on Friday, Feb. 12, the Republican-controlled West Virginia legislature overrode the Governor’s veto.

West Virginia’s Right-to-Work law will become effective July 1 of this year. Right-to-Work laws allow employees to decide for themselves whether to join and financially support a union. In non-Right-to-Work states, union security clauses, which can force employees to join unions, are permitted.

As in other states, union workers heavily protested the law, but were unable to ultimately sway legislators. Similar protest failed in both Wisconsin and Michigan, and the trend in favor of Right-to-Work laws continues to gain momentum. Other states with Right-to-Work laws include: Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Arkansas, Louisiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Idaho, Nevada, Utah and Arizona.

What is particularly remarkable about West Virginia joining the Right-to-Work state ranks is that like both Michigan and Wisconsin, West Virginia has historically been a staunch union state with a long history of union support, especially relative to the coal industry.

© 2019 BARNES & THORNBURG LLP

TRENDING LEGAL ANALYSIS


About this Author

Keith Brodie Labor & Employment Attorney
Partner

Traditional labor lawyer and employment law counselor Keith Brodie represents the interests of employers in Michigan and across the country. Personable, detail- and business-oriented when rendering critical legal advice, Keith’s willingness to listen, combined with his strategic legal thinking, allows him to serve client interests while building rapport and consensus.

Keith advises on traditional labor law matters under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). His experience includes collective bargaining negotiations, administration of collective bargaining agreements, and...

616-742-3958