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State Rep. Tom Morrison (R-Palatine) explained his opposition to Illinois Amendment 1 during a recent Q&A session with the North Cook News.
"I did not support this measure because state law already is tilted in favor of public and private sector unions and we don’t need to do more in the way of enshrining this into our constitution," he said. "The direction of other states that are competing for employers is to give businesses as much flexibility as possible. So if we adopt this law we’re only hurting ourselves."
Morrison also voiced his concern that Amendment 1 will give unions the permanent right to strike if their demands are not met.
"There’s no question that when the public sector goes on strike it creates a very large hardship on residents who rely on those services," he said. "In the private sector, there’s more of a balance that occurs between labor and management."
An Illinois Policy report noted that state households are already facing a $2,100 increase in property taxes per family over the next four years. If Amendment 1 passes, the tax increases could be much higher as a result of union bosses gaining more power. The amendment also expands on the bargaining points that unions can debate over, with taxpayers expected to pay for them. Such points include "economic welfare" and "safety at work," which do not have clear definitions.
Furthermore, Amendment 1 would also give unions the ability to strike indefinitely if their demands are not met during negotiations. Neighboring states do not allow most government employees to strike. Illinois, in comparison, is working on expanding the ways in which unions can launch strikes. Each year for the past three years, the Chicago Teachers Union has walked out. The same union also held strikes in 2012 and 2019.