Unions Attack Freedom Foundation Outreach in Public Hearing On HB-2016

Unions Attack Freedom Foundation Outreach in Public Hearing On HB-2016

Unions Attack Freedom Foundation Outreach in Public Hearing On HB-2016

A bill that could fairly be characterized as a union wish-list had its second hearing on April 18 in the Oregon State Legislature, this time in the Senate Committee on Workforce.

Discussion on HB 2016 stretched on for two hours, as multiple groups expressed concerns with the ludicrous legislation.

Meanwhile, numerous public-sector unions in the Beaver State came out in support of the bill — but using a new set of talking points.

During the measure’s first hearing, union shills claimed the bill would simply be codifying best practices in collective bargaining. The claim, of course, is bogus on its face, considering it would compel public employers to adopt a laundry list of poor — to say nothing of unconstitutional — practices.

This time, at least the union leaders were a little more honest with the real intent of this bill —  namely, censoring the Freedom Foundation.

Three union leaders, including AFSCME’s executive director and the president of the Oregon Education Association, were only critical of the organization’s efforts to notify union members of their constitutional rights.

What’s so laughable about their testimony is that they often claim to be retaining membership yet are so clearly threatened by the Freedom Foundation’s outreach campaign. If that message isn’t resonating with union members, why are their leaders advocating so desperately for legislation that would suppress it?

The numbers don’t lie.  When public employees learn they have a choice regarding their union membership, huge numbers conclude the service provided isn’t worth the dues paid or the freedom surrendered.

The unions’ panic was on full display during the OEA President John Larson’s testimony. Attempting to attempt to discredit the Freedom Foundation, Larson did what union stooges do best.

He lied through his teeth.

Larson repeatedly lied about the Freedom Foundation’s strategy, claiming without a shred of evidence that it emails teachers pretending to be the school district and tells union members our forms will just give them a discount on their union membership.

Instead, the information we send them simply notifies employees of their rights regarding union membership and highlights how their union is actually spending their money.

Freedom Foundation emails also clearly state that the information sent to them comes from Opt-Out Today and always includes a hyperlink to the website.

Ironically, the most recent email sent to OEA members simply informed them about House Bill 2016 and the ramifications it could have on them if passed. The Freedom Foundation Oregon office resident policy analyst touched on some of these issues during his testimony as well.

House Bill 2016 and the testimony of union leaders are just another testament to the success of the Freedom Foundation, and the shortcomings of big labor.

Vice President for News and Information
Jeff is a native of West Virginia and a graduate of West Virginia University with a degree in journalism. He served in the U.S. Army at Fort Lewis, Wash., as a broadcast journalist and has worked at a number of newspapers in West Virginia and Washington. Most recently, he spent 11 years as editor of the Port Orchard (Wash.) Independent, which earned the 2011 Washington Newspaper Publishers’ Association’s General Excellence Award as the top community newspaper in Washington. Previously, he was editor of the Business Examiner newspaper in Tacoma, Wash., for seven years. Jeff lives in Lacey; he and his wife have grown twin daughters.