Congressman Rick W. Allen, Senator Tim Scott & colleagues introduce landmark legislation to protect workers and support small business owners

U.S. Congressman Rick W. Allen (R-GA) introduced the Employee Rights Act of 2023 today, alongside Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.). The bill seeks to modernize our nation’s labor policies to match the needs of the 21st century worker and workforce. This legislation represents the Republican vision for the future of the American workforce: promoting growth and innovation, ensuring that our laws protect workers rather than union bosses, and allowing Americans to take home more of the money they earn. 

“The modern American worker wants flexibility and choice. Unfortunately, the overreaching Biden administration and Washington Democrats would rather force their radical labor agenda on the American people,” said Congressman Rick Allen. “The Employee Rights Act fights back against this overreach and instead protects workers’ rights and privacy, as well as empowers entrepreneurs and independent contractors.  It is long past time that our labor laws stand with the 21st century worker, and I am proud to lead this effort in the House of Representatives.”

“While the Biden administration and Washington Democrats continue to bend to the demands of big labor unions and special interest groups, Republicans remain focused on finding forward-thinking solutions that give our workforce and small business owners stability and flexibility,” said Senator Scott. “We should always resolve to empower and encourage Americans with the ability to provide for their families. I’m grateful to my colleagues for joining me in the fight to protect workers.”

“If it were up to the Biden administration and Democrats, every worker in the United States would be forced to join a union. That’s not hyperbole – just look at the legislation proposed by the Left. Bills like the PRO Act chip away at workers’ rights and tip the scales in favor of Big Labor special interests. That’s un-American. Competing in the 21st century economy requires pro-growth policies that lift up all workers, not just union members. I’m proud to support the Employee Rights Act to ensure that workers in America are free to decide their own future.”— House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Dr. Virginia Foxx (R-NC)

“Being pro-worker means defending the rights of all workers, including those who decide it is not in their best interest to form or join a union,” said Dr. Cassidy, Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. “No American should be intimidated or coerced into joining a union. This legislation protects workers’ right to choose what’s best for their career, whether that is to join a union or not participate at all.”

“Washington Democrats have long bowed to the demands of union bosses by prioritizing radical labor policies that harm small businesses and workers,” said Republican Whip Thune. “I’m proud to join my colleagues in introducing this common-sense bill that upholds individuals’ ability to choose to work as an independent contractor and ensures workers’ rights are protected against coercion from union bosses and the Biden administration’s heavy-handed labor agenda.”

Read the bill text in full here.

The Employee Rights Act of 2023 is co-sponsored by John Moolenaar, Austin Scott, Jake LaTurner, Mary Miller, Jeff Duncan, Bob Good, Erin Houchin, Tom Cole, Dusty Johnson, Randy Weber, James Comer, Richard Hudson, Barry Loudermilk, Joe Wilson, Drew Ferguson, Dan Crenshaw, and Scott Franklin.

In the Senate, the bill is co-sponsored by Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee Ranking Member Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Senate Republican Whip John Thune (R-S.D.), Senators Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Ted Budd (R-N.C.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Mike Crapo (R-Ind.), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), James Risch (R-Ind.), and Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.).


President Biden and Congressional Democrats have advocated for the passage of the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, which would primarily amend the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) to rewrite the laws governing private sector employers and unions.  Among other items, the PRO Act contains the following controversial provisions:

  • Joint Employer Standard: The PRO Act would codify a 2015 NLRB standard to amend who is considered an employer by expanding a joint employer status to include indirect control over employee terms and conditions. 
  • Independent Contractors and “ABC” Test: The definition of employee would be altered to narrow the definition of “supervisor” and include the so-called “ABC test” to limit who can be an independent contractor vs. an employee. 
  • Preempts State Right-to-Work Laws: State right-to-work laws guarantee that no person can be compelled to pay union dues or join a union as a condition of employment. 
  • Secret Ballot and Card Check: If a union fails to gain enough votes in an initial, secret ballot election, the PRO Act would make it easier for unions to organize by disputing the election results and claiming the employer wrongfully interfered.
  • Access to Employee Contact Information: During an organizing election, employers would be required to provide unions with work shift information and employees’ personal contact information, including cell phone numbers, home addresses, and email addresses.

The Employee Rights Act, which has been introduced in varying versions since 2011, advocates for concrete worker policies and strikes a contrast with the PRO Act by including the following provisions:

·        Guarantees secret ballot union elections.

·        Protects members’ dues from being used for political purposes without their permission.

·        Safeguards employees’ personal info & data.

·        Codifies and protects the independent contractor and franchise models.

·        Protects tribal labor sovereignty.

The Employee Rights Act of 2023 is endorsed by the following groups:

Alaska Policy Forum

ALEC Action

American Experiment

Americans for Prosperity

Americans for Tax Reform

Associated Builders and Contractors

Beacon Impact

California Business and Industrial Alliance

California Policy Center

Center for Union Facts

Club for Growth

Commonwealth Foundation

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Council for Citizens Against Government Waste

Freedom Foundation

Heritage Action for America

Independent Women's Voice

Institute for the American Worker

International Franchise Association

Job Creator’s Network

The Libre Initiative

Mackinac Public Policy Center

Maine Policy Institute

National Association of Manufacturers

National Restaurant Association

National Taxpayers Union

Nevada Policy Research Institute


Open Competition Center

Retail Industry Leaders Association

RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity

UC Chamber of Commerce

Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce

Workplace Policy Institute


Their letter of support can be found  here.


For additional information on the Employee Rights Act of 2023, visit



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