Collective Bargaining and Competitive Costs: The Case of WEA Trust
Everyone knows that competition keeps prices down. However, collective bargaining eliminates competition, and downward pressure on costs, by giving government unions a monopoly. It forces voters’ elected representatives to employ workers on terms the union accepts. With collective bargaining the government cannot shop around to get taxpayers a better deal.
Unsurprisingly, giving government unions this monopoly tends to make government more expensive – and not just through higher wages and benefits. Nowhere is this on better display than in Wisconsin.
The Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC), the state’s education union, created their own company to provide health insurance – WEA Trust. Through its powers as Wisconsin teacher’s only bargaining representative, WEAC insists that school districts to buy health coverage from their trust. Usually they get their way. Fully 64 percent of Wisconsin school districts use WEA Trust.