Missouri Unions: What you need to know

The right of workers in private employment to form unions and bargain collectively with their employers is guaranteed by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and related federal laws. The NLRA is preemptive, meaning it supersedes state law in the areas it covers. However, in areas not covered by the NLRA, such as the rights of public employees and the rights of private employees who are not engaged in interstate commerce, the states are free to make their own provisions.
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Like many states, Missouri has no comprehensive labor relations law of its own. The federal protections are the governing law of the state for private employees engaged in interstate commerce. Additional information on these protections is available.
Missouri has a constitutional provision guaranteeing workers the right to organize and bargain collectively. Its effect is to extend protections comparable to those provided under federal law to employees who might not be covered by the NLRA (MO Const. Art. I Sec. 29).
Another area that has been left to the states is the protection of a worker's right not to join a union. Many states have laws, commonly known as “right-to-work” laws, that protect this right. Missouri is not one of them. The state recognizes and will enforce collective bargaining agreements calling for union shops (in which new hires must join the union within some specified period of time) and similar union security agreements. Local right-to-work ordinances are unenforceable because there is no state law authorizing them (see MO Atty. Gen. Op. 78-86).
In a 2007 decision, the Missouri Supreme Court clarified the right to collective bargaining for public employees. ...

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