An expensive, intensive public relations campaign by organized labor resulted in the November 2011 rejection by voters of a law, known then as Senate Bill 5, to place limited controls on public employee unions. Among the measure's provisions were limits on strikes by workers such as school teachers.
Events this week in the Strongsville school district, near Cleveland, may prompt some voters to second-guess their ballots on SB 5.
About 380 unionized school system employees went on strike this week, making a mockery of the frequent educators' union claim that, "it's for the kids."
Officials are attempting to keep Strongsville schools open with 140 substitute teachers - and a security firm.
The substitutes are being intimidated by strikers, to an extent even some students find disturbing, according to a published report. Pictures of the substitutes were being posted and those entering schools were being harassed.
Members of the union have no patience with the Strongsville school board, despite the fact it is attempting to cope with a $6 million hole in the district budget. Teachers, who earned an average salary of $64,540 during the 2011-12 school year, are to receive "step increases" based on experience, but are demanding even more to end the walkout.
Even as they walk the picket line, some of the Strongsville strikers insist they only want what is best for their students. Nonsense, as one high school sophomore told a reporter. "They say they're all worried about the kids, but they're worried about themselves," she said, as some of her classmates nodded in agreement. Precisely. Again, the strike may well make some Ohio voters wonder why they rejected SB 5.