200 nurses and ancillary employees freed from illegal SEIU forced dues power grab
Thousand Oaks, CA (October 21, 2013) – A group of Thousand Oaks Surgical Hospital (TOSH) nurses and support staff has won three federal settlements forcing two major healthcare unions and the hospital's parent company to stop illegally forcing them and their coworkers into unwanted union "representation."
The settlements come after three TOSH nurses and two support staff receiving free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation filed federal charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
In late November 2012, Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) Holdings, Inc.-owned Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center purchased TOSH. In late April 2013, Los Robles Hospital management suddenly announced that TOSH workers were "represented" by Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) and SEIU Local 121 RN union officials. Supposedly the workers had been "accreted" into a pre-existing Los Robles-SEIU monopoly bargaining unit.
Union officials threaten teenage worker with job termination
Oceanside, CA (September 5, 2013) – A local grocery union is facing federal charges for violating a teenage part-time Ralphs Grocery clerk's workplace rights.
With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, the Ralphs clerk filed an unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) against the United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 135 union late last month.
UFCW Local 135 union officials provided the clerk in July with a membership packet that illegally stated that the clerk and other new hires must join the union and pay full union dues as a condition of their employment while burying notice of his actual legal rights. Information about workers' right to refrain from full dues paying union membership was located at the back of the packet in fine print.
The clerk eventually learned about his right to refrain from full dues paying union membership and made multiple inquiries about resigning his union membership and paying reduced dues with UFCW Local 135 brass. The clerk's multiple requests were denied, stonewalled, or ignored.
Right to Work Foundation attorneys challenge union hierarchy for violating civil servant’s constitutional rights
Santa Barbara, CA (August 21, 2013) – A retired Santa Barbara County employee has filed a federal lawsuit against the county and a local Service Employees International Union (SEIU) affiliate for violating her constitutional rights and refusing to follow federal disclosure requirements.
Rosemary Banko filed the suit in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California located in Los Angles with free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys.
Before Banko retired in July, the county collected full union dues from her paychecks even though she was not a member of the SEIU Local 620.
Worker advocate says National Labor Relations Board has failed to protect workers who wish to refrain from union affiliation
Washington, DC (June 26, 2013) – An Orange County, California hospital worker and her National Right to Work Foundation staff attorney will testify today before a U.S. House subcommittee about the need for workers to be able to choose free from coercion whether they want a union hierarchy in their workplace.
Marlene Felter, a Chapman Medical Center worker who led an effort to stave off unwanted Service Employees International Union (SEIU) boss "representation" from her workplace, and attorney Glenn Taubman, who has over 30 years of experience on the Foundation's legal staff, will testify before the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce's Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions at 10:00 AM.
Worker advocate assists healthcare workers coerced into forced dues union ranks
Sacramento, CA (April 4, 2013) – With free legal aid from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, a Sutter Roseville Medical Center respiratory care practitioner has filed another federal charge against a statewide union for violating a federal settlement by coercing her and her colleagues into paying full union dues even though they are not union members.
In late 2011, Mary Massen won a federal settlement after filing charges against with the Oakland-based Service Employees International Union United Healthcare Workers – West (SEIU-UHW) union with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
Because California does not have Right to Work protections for its workers, Massen, who has exercised her right to refrain from formal union membership, is still forced to pay union fees as a condition of employment. However, because of a Foundation-won Supreme Court precedent in Communication Workers v. Beck, she cannot be compelled to pay the portion of union dues used for the union's political, lobbying, and member-only activities. Union officials are also legally obligated to inform workers of these rights and to provide workers with an independently verified audit of chargeable and non-chargeable expenses.
Writing in The Orange County Register, former teacher Larry Sand exposes the hypocrisy of teacher unions' rhetoric on Right to Work:
Teachers unions are forever telling its members how much the union does for them in the way of wages, job benefits, etc. You would think that an organization that does so much for its members wouldn't have to resort to bullying to keep them in the fold. But the unions know that without forcing the issue, many teachers would just say, "No." For instance, in Wisconsin, after Act 10 came into law allowing teachers to quit their union, about 30 percent have already quit with more to follow this June when their contracts expire.
Well said. If unions are providing valuable services, as they claim, they shouldn't have to rely on coercion to collect dues and attract members. And if teachers and other workers are no longer joining and paying dues voluntarily, union bosses should adjust their sales pitch instead of resorting to compulsion.
Sand goes on to demolish the "free rider" myth peddled by anti-Right to Work advocates:
It is a compelling argument, but untrue. The National Labor Relations Act does not mandate unions exclusively represent all employees, but permits them to electively do so. Under the Act, unions can also negotiate "members-only" contracts that only cover dues-paying members. They do not have to represent other employees.
Case shows desperate need for California Right to Work law
San Francisco, CA (January 31, 2013) – With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, a San Francisco in-home care provider has filed a state charge against a local union for illegally refusing to honor her right to refrain from full-dues-paying union membership.
On Tuesday, Shiufan Lee filed the charge with the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) against Service Employees International Union-Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW).
Lee attempted to exercise her right to refrain from formal union membership via phone in early August 2012, and in a letter she sent on August 3. Lee received a call from a union official where she again asked to resign from membership and full dues payments. Each time she spoke with union officials, they refused to acknowledge her resignation.
Case shows desperate need for California Right to Work law
San Jose, CA (September 6, 2012) – Last week, the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) filed a complaint against a local union for illegally refusing to honor a worker's right to refrain from full-dues-paying union membership.
With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center pharmacist Jeffrey Lum of Cupertino filed a state charge in June against Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 521 for illegally forcing him into full union dues payments.
Lum, a county employee, exercised his right to refrain from formal union membership in November 2011 and sent a letter to the SEIU notifying the union hierarchy of his decision.
Union organizers conspired to force healthcare workers into union ranks using coercive "card check" tactics
Orange, CA (August 3, 2012) – With free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, Chapman Medical Center workers have won federal settlements that will remove unwanted Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare Workers West officials' representation from their workplace.
Chapman management and SEIU officials have signed National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) settlements after Marlene Felter of Costa Mesa filed charges with the agency in response to SEIU organizers colluding with Chapman management to illegally rig a union organizing "vote" to pave the way for the union to claim to "represent" the workers. Under the settlements, SEIU must give up its "exclusive representation" and Chapman will publicly withdraw recognition of the union.