Where are the jobs promised under West Virginia’s Right to Work law?

Parkersburg-Marietta Building and Construction Trades Council (PMBTC) Business Manager and Financial Secretary-Treasurer Buddy Malone joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss So-Called “Right to Work” legislation and the lack of Prevailing Wage laws in West Virginia and how those laws have impacted the state’s job market.

The PMBTC represents eight counties in Ohio and eight counties in West Virginia. Though Ohio is largely Republican controlled, it has Prevailing Wage laws and is not a So-Called “Right to Work” state. West Virginia, on the other hand, has a So-Called “Right to Work” law.

The difference between the two states is night and day, Malone said. Though West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice, a Republican, promised jobs would come to his state when state lawmakers passed a So-Called “Right to Work” law, the opportunities never materialized. In contrast, Ohio’s job market is robust and continues to grow, Malone added.

He then spoke about a Green Schools Initiative between the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the North America’s Building Trades Union (NABTU) to help train high school students and community members for job opportunities in the building trades.

Malone also talked about the great opportunities the bi-partisian infrastructure bill will create, and how the building trades are preparing to fill those jobs by increasing apprenticeship recruitment.

Lastly, Malone touched on U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin’s (D-W. Va.) opposition of the Build Back Better budget reconciliation bill and why he thinks the Senator is still interested in making a deal.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more about these topics:


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