Saturday, July 27, 2013

Public pensions a big casualty in Detroit's bankruptcy: Their fight is all worker's fight

Their fight is all worker's fight -- And the support from MI Attorney General Bill Schuette is good news. --See below.

From Yahoo News:

Detroit bankruptcy another setback for unions

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Detroit's historic bankruptcy filing is a major setback for public employee unions that have spent years trying to ward off cuts to the pensions of millions of government workers around the country.
If the city's gambit succeeds, it could jeopardize an important bargaining tool for unions, which often have deferred higher wages in favor of more generous pensions and health benefits.
It also could embolden other financially troubled cities dealing with pension shortfalls to consider bankruptcy, or at least take a harder line with their unions in negotiating cuts.
"This is essentially the union's worst nightmare, said Gary Chaison, professor of industrial relations at Clark University in Worcester, Mass. "It means that the most sacred of sacred things they've negotiated for, the pensions of their retired members, are going to be severely cut."
Detroit's bankruptcy filing comes on the heels of some public unions losing most of their collective bargaining rights in Wisconsin. At the same time, the unions have shed thousands
. . . Click here for more of the Yahoo News article

Michigan attorney general backs pensioners in Detroit bankruptcy

Michigan's Attorney General Bill Schuette, a Republican, said on Saturday he would defend retirees who risk losing public pensions because of Detroit's bankruptcy, putting him at odds with the city's emergency manager appointed by fellow Republican Governor Rick Snyder.

Schuette, an elected official, said the Michigan state constitution is "crystal clear" in stating that pension plans are a contractual obligation that may not be diminished or impaired.
 . . . Click here for more of the Yahoo News article

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