Senate Bill 5
In February of 2011, Senate Bill 5 was introduced to the Ohio Senate. The proposed bill would have stripped employees of their right to collective bargaining, threatening the safety of millions of working men and women across our state. And we fought back.
We were there at the Statehouse rally against Senate Bill 5, where out-of-touch lawmakers literally locked us out of the building to stop our voices from being heard. But we were determined. We stood together in the cold and pledged to fight for the rights of each and every Ohio worker.
We were there when Governor Kasich signed Senate Bill 5 into law in late March of 2011, and we immediately formed an effort to collect signatures to repeal the bill. We joined together with people from all across the state to circulate petitions in all 88 counties, and set record numbers by doing so.
We were there at the "People’s Parade" in Columbus, where thousands of supporters gathered together to deliver the 1,502 signed petitions to the Secretary of State’s office. And we were there to hear and celebrate that our efforts had resulted in the collection of 1,298,301 signatures.
But we weren’t done yet. We continued working to get out the vote and educate people about why Senate Bill 5 was an unfair and unsafe attack against all of Ohio’s working men and women. AFSCME Council 8 worked with other labor leaders and community groups to bring massive attention to this vital issue. We erected a billboard against Senate Bill 5 in the city of Mansfield, and joined with the Ohio AFL-CIO to conduct a telethon where we spoke with thousands of voters. In October of 2011, we launched the "Walk for Victory," further promoting our cause and celebrating recent polls that showed that our efforts were paying off.
Finally, AFSCME Council 8 was there when together, we all won, defeating Senate Bill 5 by a 62-38 percent margin, bringing 2.1 million voters to the polls in an off-year election to make their voices heard. AFSCME Council 8 knows what it means to fight for the rights of workers across Ohio, because we did. We were there.