Workers’ Rights Amendment passes, will be added to state constitution

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The Workers’ Rights Amendment, also known as Amendment 1, was approved by voters on Election Day.

The amendment makes workers organizing and collective bargaining a constitutional right in the state.

The Associated Press called the race on Tuesday, Nov. 15. It failed to get the 60% of those voting on the question, but was approved by more than 50% of all votes cast. The final vote tally was 58.1% in favor of the amendment.

“Being able to protect everyone’s ability to step up and organize their workplace is a critical component to making sure everyone has access to some higher paying jobs and safer workplaces,” Joe Bowen, spokesman for the Vote Yes for Workers’ Rights group, told the AP. “Specifically, you’ve certainly seen a lot of abuses — Starbucks baristas or folks who might work at Amazon warehouses. But these historical examples have existed for generations and it’s really important that we do what we can to secure these rights for Illinoisans.”

Conservative groups like Illinois Policy Awake Illinois opposed the amendment, as did GOP gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey.