December 16, 2016

ANALYSIS: TRUE. It’s Time To Protect The Right To Earn A Living.

“The right of individuals to pursue a chosen business or profession, free from arbitrary or excessive government interference, is a fundamental civil right.” That’s how the Right to Earn a Living Act, passed overwhelmingly by the Tennessee General Assembly earlier this year, begins.

While this bill did not receive as much attention as some of the others, this new law is an important one for economic liberty in our state. It addresses one of the biggest hurdles placed on Tennesseans who are trying to climb the economic ladder: occupational licensing. Obviously, we all expect our doctor or nurse to go to school and get a license to treat us. But did you know that in Tennessee, you need a license to run an auction or even wash someone’s hair? In fact, a stunning 111 jobs require a license in our state, making Tennessee one of the most burdensome states in the nation to try to earn a living.

This is a problem in many states. This bill — cosponsored by Rep. Martin Daniel in the state House, and Sen. Mark Green in the Senate — is a good start.

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