Commentary: Prop 4 Supporters Promise Programs That Already Exist

Home-based caregiver proposal would lock SEIU unionization scheme into state constitution

Fresh off the heels of the disingenuous television ad from the unions telling people what Proposal 2 won’t do instead of what it will do comes a doozy from the unions supporting an initiative to add a home-based caregiver unionization scheme into the state constitution.

The ad from the “Keep Home Care Safe” group shows Monette Winfield saying how happy she was that she didn’t have to go to a nursing home after a surgery because of the woman who came to her house to help her during her recovery. Monette then says that Proposal 4 ensures that will continue.

Guess what, Monette — it will continue without the passage of Proposal 4. The federal Home Help Program has been in existence since 1981, and it already ensures people can get help in their homes.

Of course, the ad makes no mention of the scheme orchestrated by the Service Employees International Union under Gov. Jennifer Granholm to forcibly unionize home-based caregivers. It also does not mention the $32 million the SEIU has taken from the Medicaid checks of the elderly and disabled in Michigan so it can use the money to make such commercials and push its political agenda.

The ad also ignores the fact that Gov. Rick Snyder signed a law this year that made the unionization of these caregivers in Michigan illegal because they are not state workers. The SEIU took the issue to federal court and claimed it was a “First Amendment advocacy organization.” Seriously, the union really claimed that and said it would “suffer irreparable damage” if it didn’t get the money.

The ad also says criminal background checks will be done of workers on a registry. This too, already exists. More than 44,000 people were unionized in the SEIU scheme, but the union was able to sign up only 933 people on that registry. Why? Because 75 percent of the caregivers are taking care of their family and friends and don’t need to have a background check done.

Safe, quality home care already exists in Michigan.

Proposal 4 does nothing to keep people any safer or boost the quality of care, but it would continue lining the pockets of the SEIU at the expense of Michigan’s most vulnerable residents.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.