Coalition Letter Supporting H.R. 2700, the “Employee Rights Act”

Photo Credit: Getty

April 5, 2023 

On behalf of the undersigned organizations, representing millions of American workers and  employers, we write today to urge you to cosponsor the Employee Rights Act (ERA) of 2023, a  vital piece of legislation that will empower American workers and protect their freedom of  choice in the workplace. 

Over the past several decades, America’s workers have innovated to meet the demands of our  changing economy. But America’s labor laws haven’t significantly changed since 1947. First introduced in 2011, the ERA will update our labor code to better protect workers’ rights, while  also reflecting major changes to our economy in recent years. According to polling from the  Center for Union Facts, the legislation’s key provisions are overwhelmingly popular with union  households, as well as the American public more broadly. 

The ERA will soon be introduced by Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) and Representative Rick Allen (R-GA), with support from Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and other key  Republicans. The bill has been condensed from previous versions to focus on several key  provisions, including updates to address modern-day concerns such as new protections for  franchise small businesses. 

The legislation’s key provisions are highlighted below: 

Secret Ballot Elections. The ERA will ensure that any vote to organize a workplace  or hold a strike is done via private ballot. Today, unions can bypass private votes in  favor of a public “card check” election – a means by which unions organize by  collecting signatures or “cards.” Without a private ballot, workers can be subject to  harassment or intimidation to sign a card authorizing the union to represent them. The  union boss–backed Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act would essentially  eliminate the secret ballot vote and replace it with a card check system. But a secret  ballot ensures that workers always have a private, protected vote that reflects their  true preference for unionization in their workplace. Simply put, workers should have  the right to vote on their representation in the workplace the same way they vote on  their representation in Congress. 

Employee Privacy. There is currently no ability for employees to prevent their  personal information from being disclosed to the National Labor Relations Board and  to the union that seeks to represent them. The ERA limits the amount of employee  personal information a union receives during an organizing drive. In addition, the bill  makes it an unfair labor practice if the union uses employees’ personal information  for any reason other than a representation proceeding.


Political Protection. Many workers join a union in hopes that their dues will help  improve their workplace. But hundreds of millions of dollars in union dues are spent  each year supporting political candidates and causes, rather than collective bargaining  issues. The ERA would require workers to consent to their union dues being used for  anything other than collective bargaining efforts.  

Protection for Independent Contractors. The ERA updates the current law to keep  the definition of an “employee” in line with the common-law definition used by  numerous state statutes and in recent Supreme Court rulings. This common-law  test determines the appropriate classification for a given worker by relying primarily  on the degree of control and independence that worker maintains. The ERA creates  consistency when it comes to defining employee and independent contractor status,  providing much-needed clarity for both workers and employers. 

Protection for Local Businesses. The ERA includes the Save Local Business Act,  which clarifies the joint employer standard to provide clarity and certainty for small  business owners and workers. It would allow more franchisees to own their own  businesses, giving more Americans the opportunity to realize their dream of starting  their own business. 

As technology advances and more industries seek to navigate a post-pandemic economy, it is  common sense that our labor laws – which haven’t been meaningfully updated in decades – adapt to today’s diverse economy and provide the best protection possible for America’s  workers. 

We hope you’ll consider signing on to support this legislation and help bring America’s labor  law into the 21st century. For more information on the Employee Rights Act, or to join as a co sponsor in the Senate, please contact Ashling Preston in the Office of U.S. Senator Tim Scott  ([email protected]). For House cosponsorship, please contact Lauren Hodge in  the Office of Congressman Rick Allen ([email protected]). 



Bethany L. Marcum, CEO, Alaska Policy Forum

Lisa B. Nelson, CEO, ALEC Action

Catrin Wigfall, Policy Fellow, American Experiment

Akash Chougule, Vice President, Americans for Prosperity

Grover Norquist, President, Americans for Tax Reform

Michael D. Bellaman, President and CEO, Associated Builders and Contractors

Justin Owen, President & CEO, Beacon Impact

Tom Manzo, President and Founder, California Business and Industrial Alliance

Will Swaim, President, California Policy Center

Charlyce Bozzello, Communications Director, Center for Union Facts

Scott Parkinson, Vice President of Government Affairs, Club for Growth

Charles Mitchell, President and CEO, Commonwealth Foundation

Sean Higgins, Research Fellow, Competitive Enterprise Institute

Iain Murray, Vice President for Strategy and Senior Fellow, Competitive Enterprise Institute

Tom Schatz, President, Council for Citizens Against Government Waste

Aaron Withe, CEO, Freedom Foundation

Ryan Walker, Vice President, Heritage Action for America

Heather R. Higgins, CEO, Independent Women’s Voice

F. Vincent Vernuccio, President, Institute for the American Worker

Michael Layman, Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs, International Franchise Association

Alfredo Ortiz, President, Job Creators Network

Sandra Benitez, Executive Director, The LIBRE Initiative

Stephen Delie, Director of Labor Policy, Mackinac Public Policy Center

Matthew Gagnon, Chief Executive Officer, Maine Policy Institute

Brian Walsh, Director of Labor and Employment Policy, National Association of Manufacturers

Sean Kennedy, Executive Vice President, Public Affairs, National Restaurant Association

Brandon Arnold, Executive Vice President, National Taxpayers Union

Robert Fellner, Vice President, Nevada Policy Research Institute

Tom Hebert, Executive Director, Open Competition Center

Evan Armstrong, Vice President, Workforce Policy, Retail Industry Leaders Association

Mike Stenhouse, CEO, RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity

Glenn Spencer, Senior Vice President, Employment Policy Division, US Chamber of Commerce

Rachel Ver Velde, Senior Director of Workforce, Education and Employment Policy, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce

Shannon Meade, Executive Director, Workplace Policy Institute