Union Attorney Bruce Ehlke Statement on Unconstitutional Aspects of Union-Busting Bill | WisCommunity

Union Attorney Bruce Ehlke Statement on Unconstitutional Aspects of Union-Busting Bill

Bruce Ehlke, the lead attorney representing a coalition of Wisconsin labor unions that filed a suit yesterday claiming the union-busting bill violates the Wisconsin Constitution's equal protection, free speech, and freedom of assembly and petition provisions, today released a statement on the lawsuit:

Wisconsin has a long and admirable history of encouraging labor and management peace through collective bargaining. Even before public sector unions were granted the statutory right to bargain, public employers and employees in fact engaged in an early form of collective bargaining known as “meet and confer." This Act sets Wisconsin’s labor relations back 80 years.

Employers in Wisconsin have long benefited from the certainty and stability afforded to them through collective bargaining agreements. During the last several weeks, the support of public employers for collective bargaining has become obvious, as municipalities across the state have scrambled to get new and extended agreements into effect before the enactment of this Act, in order to preserve their ability to operate with a full contract in place for as long as possible.

Regardless of how individuals feel about the level of compensation and benefits received by public sector employees, it is without a doubt that those employees, citizens of our state, are entitled to equal protection and freedom of association, and this Act improperly attempts to strip public sector workers of those rights.

Ehlke, is widely regarded as one of Wisconsin's best labor lawyers. (I would argue THE best.) In his long and distinguished career, he has argued in courtrooms at all levels, including numerous trips to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

In the past, has also has served as Dane County Bar President and the State Bar of Wisconsin's Labor Law Section Director from 1985-88 and is currently Chair of the Bar's Member, Professionalism Committee and a member of the District 9 Investigation Committee of the Wisconsin Supreme Court's Office of Lawyer Regulation.

While Ehlke is currently the flag ship of Ehlke, Bero-Lehman, and Lounsbury, in the past he has also been a partner at Lawton & Cates and Hawkes, Quindel, Ehlke & Perry.


April 1, 2011 - 12:50pm