LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – Legislative staffers within the Michigan House of Representatives have sought help from the Teamsters Local 243 for help in its efforts to unionize.

Why the move to unionize?

“The Michigan legislative staff wants nothing less than what all workers deserve: a living wage, equal and fair treatment and respect for the jobs they perform on behalf of elected officials and the citizens of Michigan,” Local 243 President Scott Quenneville stated. “Teamsters Local 243 is 100 percent committed to doing everything within our power to welcome these employees into our Union and negotiate a historic first contract that will help build a better and more secure future.”

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Staffers initiated conversations with Local 243 in late January, according to the union and asked “for help in organizing to improve wages, security and workplace fairness and respect.”

What’s been the response?

Union President Quenneville also expressed that so far while circulating union authorization cards among both Democrat and Republican staffers, the response has been “overwhelmingly positive.”

“All eyes are watching this important and historic campaign,” Quenneville stated. “Just like Teamsters who launched ‘practice pickets’ to win a new UPS contract, UAW members who went on strike against the Big Three to secure new contracts, and our newly-organized Michigan State AFL-CIO staff who are currently negotiating their first contract, the Michigan legislative staff employees deserve a Union contract that will provide better wages, improved security and respect, and give these employees an equal voice. Teamsters Local 243 is fully committed to making that happen.”

Quenneville said once the desired number of authorization cards is collected, Local 243 will petition the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) for a Union-recognition vote. According to the union, there will be more updates as the campaign unfolds.

Michigan House Leadership Weighs in on the Union efforts.

When asked to comment on the unionization effort, House Speaker Joe Tate’s record on labor “speaks for itself,” according to his spokeswoman Amber McCann.

“The effort in the House is an employee-led effort and the speaker supports the ability of those employees to explore forming a union,” McCann said, according to the Detroit News.

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While House Republican leader Matt Hall (R-Richland Township) also did not comment, his Press Secretary, Jeremiah Ward referred to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that bars mandatory union dues for public employees.

“Democrat staff can’t forcibly cut our paychecks to bankroll a far-left union,” Ward said according to the Detroit News.