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Reps. Russo, Crossman Introduce General Assembly Employee Unionizing Bill

Bill would allow employees of the general assembly to organize and collectively bargain
July 23, 2020
C. Allison Russo News

COLUMBUS — State Reps. Allison Russo (D-Upper Arlington) and Jeffrey A. Crossman (D-Parma) today announced the introduction of a bill that would strike provisions in the Ohio Revised Code prohibiting collective bargaining for currently exempted General Assembly employees, including legislative staff.

“All government employees, including our own legislative staff, should be able to voluntarily organize and bargain collectively for safe working conditions and better pay.  As legislators, we have the ability to remove current legal barriers and stand up for workers’ rights by updating state law.  As workers across Ohio are evaluating the safety of their work environments during this pandemic, there is no better time than the present to consider this legislation,” said Rep. Russo.

“As promised, we have crafted legislation to allow our staff to organize and collectively bargain,” said Rep. Crossman.  “We intend to continue pursuing this legislation because we believe that workers have a fundamental right to advocate for themselves for better working conditions, and they are unable to fairly do so if the state prohibits their ability to organize and bargain collectively.”

The introduction of this bill follows repeated outreach from House Democrats calling for more transparency and clarity on health and safety protocols for members, staff and the public, and comes in the wake of multiple Republican staffers testing positive for COVID-19.