LOS ANGELES -- Hundreds of workers and their supporters plan to march 10 miles across Los Angeles today in an effort to make it easier for workers to join unions.
The marchers will gather at the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor offices at 7 a.m., then begin the trek at 10 a.m. to the Westwood federal building. They expect to arrive in Westwood for a final rally around 5 p.m. after a series of stops along the way.
Another rally will be held at the Fine Arts Theatre in Beverly Hills to call on Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., to support the Employee Free Choice Act, which stalled in Congress last year and is expected to be revived this session.
Organizers with the labor federation said they expect about 400 people to take part in the march.
Hundreds of workers staged a rally in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday and delivered a petition with 1.5 million signatures supporting the legislation.
Under current law, a company may choose to recognize workers as unionized if 50 percent of workers sign union cards. If 30 percent of workers show interest in unionizing, a secret ballot is held, and if the majority of workers vote in support, the workers are unionized.
The proposed legislation would still allow the secret balloting, but if 50 percent of workers sign union cards, the workers would be automatically unionized without any input from the company.
Business leaders have been critical of the legislation, saying the union-card-signing provision would leave workers open to intimidation by union leaders forcing them to sign cards. But supporters say the bill would protect workers from employer violations of labor laws.
The proposal was passed by the House last year, but stalled in the Senate.