Don’t Eliminate Basic Worker Rights


Target: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker

Goal: Veto eliminations of basic worker rights including fair wages and at least one day off per week.

Wisconsin workers could lose living wage protections, the right to at least one day off each work week, and other rights long considered to be essential in the U.S. if Governor Scott Walker signs the new budget currently on his desk as-is. These anti-worker provisions were snuck in at the last minute over the holiday weekend.

This budget bill includes a host of other controversial and regressive additions including a bicycle tax, deregulating the practices of predatory payday lenders, and allowing police to use military equipment without disclosing the purpose of that use to the public. It also eliminates a 100-year “living wage” provision that states that workers deserve pay which provides “minimum comfort, decency, physical and moral well-being.” It would be replaced with a statement saying workers deserve the minimum wage–only $7.25 per hour in Wisconsin.

This bill is a disaster for workers who have already seen their rights devastated by this ultra-conservative governor. It’s been pushed through the House and Senate, but Walker has the ability to veto individual provisions in the bill. Our only hope is to demand that these shoehorned attacks on worker rights be vetoed, or better yet that the bill be vetoed altogether until they can come up with one that’s fair. Sign our petition to urge Governor Walker to preserve basic worker rights.


Dear Governor Walker,

The budget bill currently on your desk apparently contains a host of additions that were snuck in at the very last minute which eliminate basic worker rights and the 100-year-old “living wage” provision. For a century, your state has protected workers by allowing them to demand a wage that provides “minimum comfort, decency, physical and moral well-being.” It’s been repeatedly demonstrated that your state’s minimum wage doesn’t do that.

It also eliminates a rule that says workers are entitled to at least one day off per week. I don’t know how anyone can consider allowing employers to force their employees to work seven days per week. All people deserve at least one day per week of rest, especially when you consider the fact that many low-wage workers are not given the right of paid time off. Would you want to be coerced into working 365 days per year?

You’ve already done enough to chip away at worker rights. These are the people who fuel the economy of the entire state and make your job possible. Don’t betray them by taking away their basic rights to a day off and a living wage. I demand that you use your veto power to eliminate these anti-worker provisions, or better yet veto the entire bill and try again without sneaking in last-minute additions that make life harder for the common people.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: rochelle hartman

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