Senator Joe Markley (R-Southington) released the following statement today re: forced unionization of Personal Care Assistants.

March 29, 2012

“As a result of an unconstitutional executive order and an illegal labor procedure, SEIU has today co-opted a new cohort of workers. This process was imposed from the outside, for the purpose of creating thousands of new state employee union members. The topsy-turvy process means that the union cannot even represent its members in negotiations, since the legislation to enable collective bargaining did not pass last year and failed in committee this session.

“SEIU spokesman Ben Phillips said yesterday in the Record-Journal that unionization would allow workers “to meet and confer with the governor… They haven’t been able to do that until this point.” I can tell you that they are able to meet with me, and have done so—it was those meetings which led me to oppose the executive order. I think the governor would also benefit from a meeting with these workers, unionized or not.

“Personal care assistants didn’t ask for this; now, through a rushed process and by a minority vote, thousands have lost their freedom to choose: they are unionized, like it or not. That should give all of us pause.

“The governor’s executive order which made this vote inevitable ignored the clear will and authority of the legislature. Along with Cathy Ludlum and the Connecticut Association of Personal Care Assistance and other state citizens and groups, I have filed a lawsuit challenging the executive order. I will continue to fight the bill which attempts to affirm this illegal order, and I have growing confidence that we will prevail.”