Arizona Guts Public Sector Workers’ Rights
In the latest move by Arizona to gut worker rights, Governor Jan Brewer signed a bill stripping merit system protections from state employees hired on or after September 28. Currently, about three-fourths of state employees are covered by the state personnel system and have appeal rights if they are subject to discipline or termination. However, new state employees will not have these basic due process rights and may be disciplined or fired by supervisors for no reason or because of favoritism. The governor will also try to buy off current employees by offering a five percent pay bonus for nine months to employees who voluntarily give up their hard-won merit system protections. Exempted from the bill are peace officers, lower-level correctional officers, and civilian employees at the Department of Public Safety.
By Russell Naymark