The Mississippi Senate today passed legislation to enhance Mississippi’s reputation as a place to do business and strengthen the state’s right-to-work policies.

Bills passed prohibit an organization from coercing employees into strong-handed card check agreements, prevent picketing to block a business’ entrance and protect an employer’s ability to review criminal backgrounds of applicants.

“Mississippi’s status as a right-to-work state has played large part in our economic successes landing major manufacturers over the past decade,” Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves said. “These bills will protect Mississippi from a trend seen in other parts of the country where organized labor groups are using unfair negotiating tactics to bypass state laws and hurt job creation.”

The following bills, by Sen. Terry Brown, R-Columbus, were sent to the House for consideration:

– Senate Bill 2473 prohibits an organization, corporation or individual from damaging a businesses’ property and products or threatening to damage, harass or coerce a business or individual into surrendering their rights under federal labor law. It also prohibits forcing employees into neutrality agreements, card check agreements and collective bargaining recognition.

– Senate Bill 2653 prevents an organized effort to use picketing or objects, such as vehicle, to block a business’ sidewalk, entrance or exit, as well as private residences, as part of an effort in a labor dispute.

– Senate Bill 2689 ensures employers may continue to inquire about criminal history in background checks so employers can maintain a safe workplace.