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Senate action on striker bill postponed to the fall.

Despite passage of the striker bill or "Workplace Fairness Act" in the House of Representatives in June, proponents of the measure did not have enough votes to bring it to the Senate floor before the August congressional recess.

However, organized labor continued to marshall its forces to pick up the three or four more votes it believes are needed to overcome a Republican filibuster. Throughout July, labor scheduled numerous lobby days to visit senators and was planning to use the August break to continue its efforts.

Opponents of the striker bill in the Senate are ready to block the bill, but they need your help. Since the vote is expected to be so close this year, every senator needs to hear why this bill is bad for business, especially foundries.

Background

Organized labor has targeted striker replacement as its top legislative priority. The bill (H.R. 5/S. 55) prohibits employers from permanently replacing workers who strike over economic issues. It also bars employers from favoring employees who cross a picket line. President Clinton has vowed to sign the bill when it reaches his desk.

In June, the House passed the striker replacement measure (H.R. 5) on a vote of 239-190. The bill has already cleared the Senate Labor Committee and is awaiting floor action. However, proponents of S. 55 will need 60 votes to end the anticipated Republican filibuster. With the recent victory of Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas to the Senate, it makes it a little more difficult for labor to get the needed votes.

AFS Efforts

AFS has put in motion a lobbying effort that has entailed preparing and mailing out a legislative alert and sample letter to selected AFS members and six state foundry groups in key states. We are specially targeting the following senators: Kit Bond (R-MO); John Danforth (R-MO); David Durenberger (R-MN); Howell Heflin (D-AL); Sam Nunn (D-GA); Chuck Robb (D-VA); Richard Shelby (D-AL); and Arlen Specter (R-PA).

During the August recess, the AFS Washington office contacted the targeted Senate offices, expanding our efforts to additional foundry states and working with individual AFS members to schedule meetings with their senators during the recess.

In addition, we are participating in a broad-based coalition of 300 organizations - the Alliance to Keep Americans Working - to fight the legislation.

In July, Dan Goodyear, president of AFS and Pennsylvania Steel, and staff of the AFS Washington office attended a business rally at the U.S. Capitol, where employers and business associations demonstrated their solidarity against the striker bill and met with key senior Senate leaders. Goodyear also met with congressional staff in Specter's office to voice the association's opposition to the striker replacement legislation.

Action Requested

Your senator needs to hear how this bill, if enacted into law, will hurt your company and other foundries across your state. Although your senators may have voted yes to invoke cloture (against business) last year, they could change their minds this year. (A cloture motion is used to break a filibuster.) Last year's vote was easy because they knew President Bush would never sign a striker replacement bill.

We are asking AFS members to write and urge their senator(s) to oppose S. 55, and vote no on cloture. If you need assistance on your letter or have any questions, contact the AFS Washington office at 202/842-4864.

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COPYRIGHT 1993 American Foundry Society, Inc.
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Copyright 1993, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:Legislative Update; "Workplace Fairness Act"
Publication:Modern Casting
Date:Sep 1, 1993
Words:561
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