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Why not ‘Break’ the Union?

From HoosierAccess:

Written by Jim Banks, IN Senate – 17

Originally published for the Indiana Policy Review

Indiana legislators have received thousands of letters and email messages from concerned teachers, principals and superintendents. Many are politically generated by special-interest groups. Most, though, are from dedicated educators whose passion for the classroom is made clear in every word.

Yet, I disagree with almost all of their conclusions.

As a new member of the legislature, it surprises me so many of these writers, some personal friends, believe I would leave them vulnerable to an unfair evaluation system developed and managed by state bureaucrats.

I am working every day to keep that from happening.

Many expressed a fear that I would “break” the teachers union and end mandatory public-sector collective bargaining.

Yes, that’s exactly what I would do. There’s no good reason for public-sector unions to exist — for teachers or for students.

“There never was a ‘labor problem’ in government for unions to solve,” writes Dr. Morgan Reynolds, former chief economist for the U.S. Department of Labor. “Government has always been a model — read generous — employer, lavishing good pay, the eight-hour day, fringe benefits and civil-service protections on its own.”

The unions support a dynamic that drive our best teachers out of the classroom while attracting the mediocre and the misplaced. They push up costs by increasing staffing levels. They oppose the use of budget-saving volunteers. They create a bureaucratic and inefficient workplace, discouraging bold innovation.

Again, the letters on my desk, heartfelt and sincere, offer no good reason for teachers unions to exist.

Read the rest at HoosierAccess.


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