Rep. Ashford Remembers SB 5, Remains Vigilant Of Policies That Hurt Working Ohioans
Three year anniversary of Gov. Kasich signing SB 5 into law sees new challenges

State Rep. Michael Ashford (D-Toledo) reflected on the GOP-led passage of Senate Bill 5 today, marking the three year anniversary of Gov. Kasich signing the bill into law. The law ended the rights of Ohio employees-- educators, firefighters, police officers, prison guards, school employees, healthcare professionals and others—to collectively bargain for fair wages and safe work conditions. Ultimately, SB 5 was overwhelmingly overturned by a citizen-led repeal.

“Three years ago, Gov. John Kasich signed into law one of the most dangerous and unfair attacks on the rights of workers—SB 5,” said Rep. Ashford. “The Governor believed that he could successfully break the backs of middle class Ohioan’s by stripping away collective barging, but through the efforts of concerned citizens, volunteers and employees a successful repeal eliminated this unsafe law.”

Senate Bill 5 was widely panned as a politically driven attack, using the GOP’s stranglehold of state government to push through the attack on workers’ rights even in the face of vast public opposition. During the bill’s consideration, mounting public scrutiny of GOP motivations behind SB5 resulted in large Statehouse protests and impromptu closures of the Statehouse to the public—leading Democratic lawmakers to threaten legal action to reopen the Statehouse.

This General Assembly, the Ohio GOP has revived attacks on workers’ rights to collectively bargain with two so-called “Right to Work” bills.

Research has shown that so-called “Right to Work” restrictions strip workers of their rights and actually bring down wages and living standards in states where they are enacted. Aside from employees’ voices being collectively weakened,  so-called “Right to Work” restrictions have been widely criticized as giving unchecked power to large, multinational corporations.

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