Senator calls for special session to make WA 'right-to-work' state

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by TRAVIS PITTMAN / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on November 14, 2013 at 12:02 PM

Updated Thursday, Nov 14 at 8:47 PM

A Washington state senator is calling for Gov. Jay Inslee to convene a special session to turn Washington into a “right-to-work” state after union machinists voted to reject a contract extension from Boeing Wednesday night.

The vote means Boeing may move assembly of its next-generation 777 to another state. The company announced Thursday it will not negotiate with the Machinists union again until 2016.

"Washington is a hub of aerospace; we must do everything we can to keep it that way," said Sen. Michael Baumgartner, R-Spokane, in a statement. "My contacts in the aerospace community tell me that Washington must take bold actions to keep these jobs here.

There's been speculation that Boeing may be targeting cities in Alabama, California, South Carolina, Texas and Utah to build the 777x. All of those states except California are right-to-work states, according to the National Right To Work Legal Defense Foundation.

Baumgartner says he introduced a right-to-work bill earlier this year aimed at letting employees decide whether they want to join a union and to make the payment of union dues optional.

"Every individual should have both the right to join a union and the right to not join a union should they so choose," Baumgartner said.

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