The High Cost of Freeloaders

There’s one in every group.

You know the one: Everyone goes out to eat. Everyone orders. Everyone eats. Everyone pulls out their method of payment, well, everyone except that friend who conveniently left their wallet at home (again) and offers empty promises to “chip in next time.”

We all have freeloaders in our lives and if those pushing Right to Work had their way we’d have freeloaders in our workplaces too.

You see, in so called “Right to Work” states, an employee can work at a unionized jobsite and get all the benefits of belonging to a union while opting out of paying union dues. To make matters worse, RTW laws say freeloading employees don’t ever have to “chip in;” they can get union benefits as long as they work there and never have to pay a single dime.

So they’re getting something for nothing and who wouldn’t jump at the opportunity to get “free” benefits?  It’s a great deal,



What happens when all of a sudden more and more people start opting out in favor of getting this “deal?” It wouldn’t take long before the union’s power was weakened, which, of course is exactly what the anti-union forces are hoping for.

Imagine if someone in your neighborhood stopped paying their water bill but was still receiving water to their house. One by one other neighbors follow suit and soon the water department finds itself unable to serve the neighborhood at all.

Now a service that a few people started getting for free won’t be available to anyone.

If members stop paying their fair share, how are unions supposed to carry out their mission by doing things like:

-Winning strong contracts that uplift our families, our work, and the communities we serve.

-Providing legal experts to fight unfair work conditions and disciplinary actions.

-Flexing our political muscle by raising our collective voice in the halls of power.

-Winning legislation that benefits working families, etc?

It was economist Milton Friedman who said there’s no such thing as a free lunch. He was right; there isn’t. And if we allow freeloaders to stop paying their share, we’re all at risk of going hungry.


So what can you do to fight so-called Right To Work in your workplace? First, you need to get trained. Be on the lookout for Rise & Resist meetings at your jobsite over the coming weeks. These trainings will teach you how to recog

nize so-called Right To Work schemes and give you the tools necessary to fight back. To learn when the next Rise & Resist training will be held at your worksite or to request a training, contact Member Connection online or by phone at 1-877-721-4YOU.

Categories: Rise & Resist