Forced Unionism 

Worker Advocate Reacts to Volkswagen's Request for NLRB Union Election

News Release

Worker Advocate Reacts to Volkswagen's Request for NLRB Union Election

Unionization election reportedly scheduled for February 12

Washington, DC (February 3, 2014) – Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation, issued the following statement after the announcement today that Volkswagen America has petitioned the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for a rapid-fire United Auto Workers (UAW) unionization election in its Chattanooga plant:

"We're pleased that despite constant calls by UAW officials to be recognized as the workers' monopoly bargaining representative via card check recognition, Volkswagen workers will instead be given a chance to vote on the matter in a secret-ballot election. A secret-ballot election is what Foundation-assisted workers were asking for all along.

"However, we are concerned about the existence of backroom deals cut between Volkswagen and UAW officials giving union organizers preferential access to the workers leading up to the election. We call on VW to give workers opposing the union equal access and also to release any agreements it has signed regarding what would happen if the UAW union takes monopoly bargaining power over the workplace, including agreements to impose a so-called works council on the employees.

"VW workers should be given all the facts before the election so that they can make an informed choice, and we will oppose efforts to stampede them or tilt the playing field."

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Foundation Requests Investigation of NLRB's Conduct in Chattanooga Volkswagen Case

News Release

Foundation Requests Investigation of NLRB's Conduct in Chattanooga Volkswagen Case

Leaked internal emails bring agency's impartiality further into question

Washington, DC (January 29, 2014) – National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, led by former National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Member John Raudabaugh, have requested an official inquiry into the NLRB's conduct in adjudicating several Chattanooga Volkswagen America workers' charges against VW and the United Auto Worker (UAW) union during the on-going, highly-contentious UAW organizing campaign.

Foundation staff attorneys have asked the NLRB's Inspector General to investigate the agency's conduct during its processing of the workers' unfair labor practice charges that the NLRB Division of Advice instructed the NLRB Regional Director in Atlanta to dismiss.

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Special Needs Teaching Assistant Files Charge against Union for Ignoring Her Rights Under Michigan's Right to Work Law

News Release

Special Needs Teaching Assistant Files Charge against Union for Ignoring Her Rights Under Michigan's Right to Work Law

Teacher union officials stonewall worker's attempt to resign from union membership and dues payments

Pinckney, MI (October 23, 2013) – A local special needs classroom assistant has filed a state charge against a local teacher union for violating her rights under Michigan's recently enacted public-sector Right to Work law.

With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Linda Evon of Pinckney filed the state charge late last week with the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) in Detroit.

Evon, who works as a special needs classroom assistant for Pinckney Community Schools, informed the Michigan Education Association (MEA) union on September 4, 2013, that she was exercising her right under Michigan's Right to Work law to refrain from union dues payments after the union's monopoly bargaining agreement with her employer expired on June 30, 2013. Under Michigan's Right to Work law, contracts entered into after the law went into effect must respect workers' right to refrain from the payment of any union dues.

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Hospital Workers Win Federal Settlements Booting SEIU Officials from Area Hospital

News Release

Hospital Workers Win Federal Settlements Booting SEIU Officials from Area Hospital

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.

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Worker Rights Advocate Blasts McCain/Reid NLRB Deal

News Release

Worker Rights Advocate Blasts McCain/Reid NLRB Deal

President’s NLRB appointments will pave the way for at least three more years of forced-unionism giveaways

Washington, DC (July 16, 2013) – Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, issued the following statement in response to President Barack Obama's reported new nominations to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB):

"Union bosses know their coercive agenda is overwhelmingly unpopular with the American people. This is why they've turned to unelected administrative agencies like the NLRB to push through much of what they cannot get through Congress.

"And after Senator John McCain apparently struck a backroom deal today with Senate Democrats to sell out independent-minded workers, the Obama White House wasted no time meeting with union bosses to determine who they want on the agency to enact their radical agenda.

"Even though the American people who are outraged by this rouge NLRB were not included in these discussions, Obama's NLRB appointments will pave the way for at least three more years of the very forced-unionism giveaways union bosses failed to obtain through the legislative process.

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Airline Workers’ Federal Class-Action Suit Seeks to Ground Union Boss Forced Dues Powers

News Release

Airline Workers' Federal Class-Action Suit Seeks to Ground Union Boss Forced Dues Powers

Relying on landmark Knox Supreme Court decision, workers seek to roll back union boss power to collect forced dues

Dallas, TX (June 27, 2013) – Six airline workers have filed a federal class-action lawsuit that seeks to expand workers' right to refrain from paying union dues in light of last year's U.S. Supreme Court decision in Knox v. SEIU Local 1000.

Five American Eagle Airlines baggage handlers from Texas and a Southwest Airlines flight attendant from Maryland filed the lawsuit with free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas in Dallas.

The workers all are not members of the Transport Workers Union of America (TWUA). However, the workers must still accept the TWUA hierarchy as their monopoly bargaining representative even though they are prohibited from voting on the union's bargaining agreement or participating in union meetings. Additionally, federal labor law empowers union officials to extract union dues and fees from the workers as payment for their so-called "representation." If the workers refused to pay union dues or fees, they would be terminated from their jobs.

Last year, the Supreme Court suggested in its Foundation-won Knox v. SEIU ruling that it was ready to reassess whether union bosses' forced dues powers, which it called "something of an anomaly," violate workers' First Amendment rights. Responding to that suggestion, the workers' lawsuit seeks to eliminate forced unionism in America.

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Updated Analysis: Right to Work States Still Enjoying Faster Growth, Residents Have Higher Purchasing Power

Tthe National Institute for Labor Relations Research has updated its fact sheet comparing various statistics in Right to Work states and forced-unionism states, and Right to Work states continue to enjoy more growth and purchasing power for citizens than their forced-unionism counterparts.

Over the past ten years, private sector employment opportunities in Right to Work states have grown by 6.4%, compared to just 0.4% job growth in states that allow forced unionism. Other economic indicators - from purchasing power to employee compensation - are equally stark. No matter how you slice the numbers, Right to Work states simply perform better than their forced-unionism neighbors.

The case for Right to Work laws has always rested on the importance of employee freedom, but it's nice to know that protecting worker rights has other, more tangible benefits. Over the past several years, studiessurveys, and job reports have all confirmed that freedom in the workplace yields impressive economic results.

Click here for the full NILRR fact sheet.

Voluntary Emergency Responders Challenge Forced Unionism Scheme

News Release

Voluntary Emergency Responders Challenge Forced Unionism Scheme

Union bosses demand firefighters join union or be fired

Harford, MD (May 22, 2013) – Three Harford County emergency responders have filed charges against a local union for violating their rights and illegally demanding that they join the union.

With free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, the first responders filed the unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

Beginning in November 2012, the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Local 4847 union became the exclusive bargaining representative of the emergency responders at Harford County Volunteer Fire and EMS Foundation. Between November and April, the union hierarchy never informed the workers of any financial obligations they would have to meet to keep working for the County Foundation.

Then, on April 1, 2013, IAFF Local 4847 union officials demanded the workers join the union and pay full union dues. Under federal law, no worker can be forced to formally join a union. However, because Maryland is not a Right to Work state, workers can be forced to pay union dues or fees as a condition of employment.

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SEIU Union Officials Violate Federal Settlement

News Release

SEIU Union Officials Violate Federal Settlement

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.

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Workers File Suit After Company and Union Violate Utah's Right to Work Law

News Release

Workers File Suit After Company and Union Violate Utah's Right to Work Law

Union officials confiscate nearly $10,000 in illegal union dues

Salt Lake City, UT (February 25, 2013) – Four Progress Rail Services Corporation workers have filed a lawsuit alleging the company and a local union violated their rights under Utah's popular Right to Work law and illegally coerced them into paying thousands of dollars in union dues.

With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, the four workers – Bryan Rees, James Rogers, Richard Simone, and Jason Wilson – filed the lawsuit against Progress Rail and the Brotherhood of Railway Carmen/International Association of Machinists (IAM) Local 6601 union in the Third Judicial District Court in Salt Lake County.

IAM Local 6601 union officials enjoy monopoly bargaining powers over the workplace. In about May 2006, Local 6601 union officials and Progress Rail, which repairs railroad cars, negotiated a contract that contained a forced dues clause that requires all covered employees to pay union dues or fees as a condition of employment. However, under Utah's Right to Work law, workers cannot be compelled to pay union dues or fees to get or keep a job.

Click here to read the full release.


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