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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

 5:32 PM 

Senate takes up "just-cause" amendment

The Senate is now debating Amendment 3, which would require employers to show cause to fire an employee.

Sen. Jon Erpenbach, D-Middleton, said Wisconsin is an "at-will" state in which employers do not need a reason to fire an employee and the language would change Wisconsin into a "just-cause" state.

Erpenbach said he views right to work as an attack on workers' rights and that the amendment would give some protection to workers,

"If we're taking away their rights, let's give them some protection in the whole scheme of things," Erpenbach said,

Fitzgerald said the amendment creates a new cause of action under wrongful discharge and places a new burden on employers. He said it should be taken up as separate legislation, but quipped that it would not be legislation he would author.

Erpenbach responded that Republicans have framed the bill as protecting workers rights.

"You can't be for workers in Wisconsin if you won't give them tools to protect their jobs and themselves," he said.

Sen. Tim Carpenter said some workers are "treated like dirt" and that the amendment would provide them protection.



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