Collective Bargaining

A right-to-work ordinance for Fort Wayne’s police officers and firefighters survived a mayoral veto. The vote was made at Tuesday's City Council meeting. 

The ordinance says that public safety workers can’t lose their jobs if they don’t want to pay union dues. It was introduced by Republican councilman Mitch Harper.

Harper says it’s a matter of principle – that it’s not taking away union’s rights, but giving freedom of choice to the employee.

Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

Mayor Tom Henry officially vetoed the Fort Wayne City Council’s decision to end collective bargaining rights for non-public safety union workers Friday.

This is only the second veto Henry has issued as mayor. The democrat has strongly advocated against the collective bargaining measure since it was introduced.

The vote to eliminate collective bargaining ran along party lines - Henry says the measure is a step backwards, and suspects political motives by the some council members.  

The Fort Wayne City Council meets again Tuesday to discuss and possibly vote on a series of proposals aimed at limiting collective bargaining for city employees.

Councilmen John Crawford and Russ Jehl introduced the measures earlier this month, citing the high cost of both the collective bargaining process and union employee benefits.

The debate has been heated, and before the council convenes, both sides were given a chance to share their views with WBOI News.

Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

The debate over proposals to eliminate collective bargaining for public unions in Fort Wayne continued at Tuesday’s city council meeting. 

Hundreds of residents – mostly union supporters – packed Citizen’s Square for the hearing.

Councilman John Crawford, who introduced the proposals, says that collective bargaining costs taxpayers too much, in both the expense of negotiations and workers’ wages, although he doesn’t know the exact amount the city could save if his proposals are approved.

Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

Proposals to limit or eliminate collective bargaining for Fort Wayne city employees will have their first public hearing at tonight’s city council meeting.  

The proposals were introduced at last week’s meeting by Republican councilmen John Crawford and Russ Jehl.

Collectively, the measures repeal collective bargaining rights for all city union employees and consolidates those unions into just two organizations.

Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

Collective bargaining would be completely eliminated for union workers in Fort Wayne under a proposal by members of the City’s council. The council approved the introduction of the proposal Tuesday.

Collective bargaining – it’s how groups of employees use representatives to negotiate things like wages and benefits.

Fort Wayne City Councilmen John Crawford and Russell Jehl propose to repeal collective bargaining rights for city utilities and other workers. Crawford also proposes to appeal the rights for public safety workers.