Florida NAACP, big labor unite to push ‘moral’ legislative agenda

Published: Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at 12:38 PM.

While many recognize the need for more social and economic advancement opportunities for Florida’s African-American community, the way forward is the subject of debate.

State lawmakers have unveiled “Workplan 2014,” largely a jobs and education agenda but without significant investment in state social programs. The pro-economic growth agenda does not include expanding Medicaid.

As Watchdog.org reported last week, the AFL-CIO has marked Florida as a midterm election battleground ripe for labor investment, namely the governor’s race.

But even if electoral outcomes favor the social justice, labor alliance, Florida workers aren’t likely to run out and join the labor ranks, said Russ Brown, president of the Center for Independent Employees.

“Part of the reason for the decline in private-sector unions is that employees today already get what unions used to fight for,” Brown told Watchdog.org. “Its just part of being an everyday worker now.”

Brown cites a United Automobile Workers vote in Tennessee last month as an example of what would happen in Florida.

“By secret ballot and without employer intimidation, workers were given the chance to join the UAW but by a majority vote said ‘No.’”

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