Top Down Organizing (card check) 

News Release

Chattanooga Volkswagen Employees Tell Right to Work Foundation They Were Promised Secret Ballot Election

UAW union bosses target Volkswagen workers for unionization via card check scheme

Springfield, VA (September 13, 2013) – Recent media reports suggest that United Auto Workers (UAW) union officials are pushing Volkswagen AG (VOW.DE) to eliminate a secret ballot vote on unionization and instead unionize all workers in Chattanooga, Tennessee on the basis of an unreliable and abuse-prone "card check" process.

After UAW union officials claimed to receive a majority of workers signing union "cards," UAW union president Bob King told Reuters yesterday that the VW employees should be put under union monopoly control through the card check, and that they should not vote in private because, he claimed, such a secret ballot vote would be "divisive."

However, the National Right to Work Foundation has received a number of calls from workers at the plant who were told by UAW union organizers that a signature on the card was to call for a secret ballot unionization election.

Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Foundation, issued the following statement in response to King's statement to Reuters:

"Despite their promises, UAW union officials are now trying to deny workers a secret ballot election to determine whether to unionize. Instead, they are pressuring Volkswagen to recognize them as the workers' monopoly bargaining representative.

"Any worker who believes they may have been misled, pressured, or coerced into signing a union 'card' should contact the National Right to Work Foundation at 1-800-336-3600 or the Foundation's website at www.nrtw.org immediately. It is not too late for workers to protect their legal rights."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Federal Appeals Court Rules to Halt Implementation of Minnesota's Childcare Unionization Scheme

Childcare providers fight dictate to push them into forced union dues ranks

Minneapolis, MN (September 19, 2013) – Today, a federal appeals court ruled to delay implementation of Minnesota's new law that seeks to forcibly unionize the state’s home-based childcare providers.

With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Jennifer Parrish from Rochester and 11 other providers from around the state filed an appeal last month after the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota dismissed their lawsuit on the grounds that it was filed too soon.

Parrish and other providers seek to halt implementation of a recently-passed law intended to designate American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) officials as the monopoly political representative of thousands of providers in the state, who are either owners of childcare businesses or family members who take care of related children.

Patrick Semmens, vice president of the National Right to Work Foundation, issued the following statement on the appeals court ruling:

"Minnesota's childcare providers are no longer under imminent threat to be forcibly unionized in a union they want nothing to do with.

"The court ruled to delay implementation of the law pending the outcome of a National Right to Work Foundation-led challenge pending at the U.S. Supreme Court of a similar law passed in Illinois."

Home-based childcare and personal care providers have challenged similar forced-unionization-by-government-fiat schemes in several states across the country. Foundation attorneys argue that such schemes violate the providers' First Amendment right to choose with whom they associate to petition the government.

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
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.

"Obama reportedly will nominate career union lawyers Nancy Schiffer and Kent Hirozawa to the NLRB. Both NLRB nominees, who are practically guaranteed to be confirmed, are staunch pro-forced unionism advocates.

"Schiffer is a long-time supporter of 'card check' unionization and has testified before Congress in favor of this coercive scheme.

"Meanwhile, Foundation staff attorneys squared off against Kent Hirozawa in a case in which union officials unlawfully retaliated against a worker for initiating a successful workplace decertification drive to eject the unwanted union from her workplace.

"The worker received free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation attorneys after her home was flooded with hundreds of unwanted magazines and advertisements, jeopardizing her credit rating."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Hospital Worker to Testify at Congressional Hearing Regarding SEIU Card Check Coercion

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.

Felter will highlight the need for the Secret Ballot Protection Act, sponsored by Congressman David Roe (R-Tenn.), while testifying about her personal experiences dealing with a coercive SEIU card check unionization campaign.

Felter and her coworkers were a target of an SEIU card check unionization scheme after SEIU Healthcare Workers West and Chapman Medical Center officials entered into a backroom deal known as a "neutrality agreement" designed to grease the skids for workers to be forced into union ranks. In the agreement, management granted union operatives access to company facilities and waived the right to have a federally-supervised secret ballot election to determine whether workers wished to be unionized.

Union organizers frequently use card-check organizing tactics to bribe, browbeat, or cajole workers into forced-union-dues payments against their will.

The Secret Ballot Protection Act guarantees workers a secret ballot vote in union elections. The subcommittee will also hear testimony regarding the Representation Fairness Restoration Act, which would invalidate the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB)'s policy of allowing union militants to target and organize small units of workers if they know most employees at a workplace don't want to join the union.

"Time and again, Barack Obama's NLRB has failed to protect workers who wish to refrain from union affiliation and forced dues payments," said Mark Mix, President of National Right to Work. "Congress needs to reign in Obama's out-of-control NLRB."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Supreme Court to Hear National Right to Work Foundation Case Challenging Backroom Union Organizing Deal

Right to Work legal challenge could determine if companies are allowed to hand over sensitive employee information to aggressive union organizers

Washington, DC (June 24, 2013) – Today, the United States Supreme Court announced that it is granting a writ of certiorari in Mulhall v. UNITE HERE, a case that could determine if companies are allowed to hand over workers' personal information to union organizers in exchange for union concessions, among other things.

In 2004, UNITE HERE Local 355 and Mardi Gras Gaming entered into an agreement in which union officials promised to spend over one hundred thousand dollars on a gambling ballot initiative and guaranteed not to picket, boycott, or strike against Mardi Gras facilities.

In return, Mardi Gras agreed to give union operatives employees' personal contact information (including home addresses) and grant access to company facilities during a coercive 'card check' organizing campaign, refrain from informing workers about the downsides of unionization, and refrain from requesting a federally-supervised secret ballot election to determine whether employees unionized.

With the help of Foundation staff attorneys, Mardi Gras Gaming employee Martin Mulhall filed a lawsuit challenging this organizing pact in 2008. Under the Labor Management Relations Act, employers are prohibited from handing over "any money or other thing of value" to union organizers, a provision that is supposed to prevent union officials from selling out workers' rights in exchange for corporate concessions. Mulhall argued that the company's concessions were of substantial monetary value because they made UNITE HERE's organizing drive easier and less expensive.

Mulhall won a significant victory last spring, when the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the company's organizing assistance could constitute "a thing of value." UNITE HERE lawyers quickly appealed the decision to the Supreme Court, prompting Foundation attorneys to file a cross-petition asking the Court to review certain aspects of the Eleventh Circuit's ruling.

Foundation attorneys believe that the Eleventh Circuit's decision was too narrowly tailored to prevent companies from aiding union organizers with valuable concessions. The Supreme Court will now revisit whether the company's organizing assistance constitutes "a thing of value."

"We hope the Supreme Court will expand upon the Eleventh Circuit's landmark ruling and ensure that union organizers can't cut backroom deals with management," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "Companies shouldn't be allowed to turn over employees' personal information to unscrupulous Big Labor organizers as a negotiating tactic."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Nurse Union Faces Federal Suit for Selling out Workers

Union organizers’ intimidation sways outcome of unionization election

Massillon, OH (May 14, 2013) – Four local nurses have filed a federal lawsuit against the National Nurses Organizing Committee (NNOC) union for violating its duty of fair representation by striking a backroom deal with company management in exchange for its assistance with unionizing its nurses.

With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Affinity Medical Center nurses Cinda Keener, Susan Kelley, Ryan Chizmadia, and Katherine Manfull filed the lawsuit with the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Ohio Eastern Division in Akron.

NNOC union organizers and Community Health Systems (CHS) management entered into a "neutrality agreement" designed to help the union organizers impose monopoly bargaining on all the nurses at Affinity and at least two other CHS hospitals. In the agreement, union organizers were given preferential access to the facility and conducted a "quicksnap" unionization election.

At Affinity, non-employee union organizers stalked, reported on, and attempted to get company management to retaliate against nurses who exercised their rights to oppose the unionization of their workplace. Company officials, at the behest of NNOC union bosses, even made one of the nurses who opposed unionization document the activities of fellow nurses who campaigned against unionization. The unionization election was "officially" decided by 4 votes with an additional 7 votes contested.

Two of the Affinity nurses are contesting the results of the election with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), pointing out that the secret deal between Affinity and NNOC union officials, combined with the intimidation of nurses who spoke out against unionization, likely affected the outcome of the union vote. However, the nurses have been repeatedly denied a chance to challenge the forced unionization of their hospitals by NLRB Regional Director Frederick Calatrello.

In their lawsuit, the four Affinity nurses allege that the NNOC union hierarchy acted in bad faith and violated its duty of fair representation by illegally pre-negotiating nurses' benefits and working conditions in exchange for company assistance, keeping the terms of the agreement and other negotiations concealed from the nurses in the lead up to the election, and accepting illegal assistance from the company to unionize the nurses.

"Nurses at three separate hospitals have been stripped of their rights to oppose forced unionism in their workplace," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "Medical professionals shouldn't be subjected to backroom deals that give union operatives preferential treatment at the expense of employees' workplace rights."

"Because Ohio does not have a Right to Work law, Affinity's nurses may now be compelled to pay union dues and fees to a union hierarchy that clearly does not have their best interests at heart," added Mix. "That is why Ohio should pass Right to Work protections for its workers."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Right to Work Foundation Announces Offer of Free Legal Aid to Chattanooga Volkswagen Employees

Union and company are reportedly colluding to force workers into union ranks

Springfield, VA (April 1, 2013) – Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation, has issued the following statement in response to recent media reports that United Auto Worker (UAW) union and Volkswagen AG (VOW.DE) officials are in talks to unionize the VW workers at the Chattanooga, Tennessee plant:

"Recent media reports suggest that UAW union officials are working to negotiate the workplace conditions of Volkswagen's Chattanooga employees even though the workers are not represented by the UAW union hierarchy.

"The National Right to Work Foundation has seen again and again the UAW union hierarchy pressure companies to cut backroom deals designed to push workers into union ranks whether the employees like it or not. For example, UAW officials vetoed pay increases and secretly pre-negotiated bargaining concessions at the expense of Freightliner workers in North and South Carolina in exchange for company assistance in unionizing the workers.

"Whenever UAW union officials have brokered secret agreements with companies, history shows that workers often end up with a raw deal. Volkswagen workers may suffer the same fate.

"National Right to Work attorneys have assisted workers across the country who have suffered the consequences of these top-down organizing campaign designed by UAW union officials.

"Workers who feel they are being unfairly pressured when deciding whether or not to associate with the UAW union may request free legal aid from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys by calling 1-800-336-3600 or on the Foundation's website at www.nrtw.org."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Union Faces Charges for Attempting to Bribe Employees with Money, Immigration Promises

Ironworker organizers mixed threats, bribes in an attempt to goad employees into supporting their union

Toledo, OH (February 13, 2013) – With the help of National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, a Nova Services employee has filed unfair labor practice charges against the Ironworkers Local 55 union for attempting to bribe and threaten him and his coworkers into supporting a recent union organizing drive.

Fifteen other Nova Services employees have also retained a Foundation staff attorney to represent them.

Ironworkers Local 55 is currently engaged in an aggressive organizing campaign at Nova Services facilities. In August 2012, a union official told employees at an organizing meeting that he could provide them with legal immigration status in exchange for supporting the union. Union operatives also made similar offers individually to at least six employees.

Later that month, union officials threatened to report their employer’s immigration violations if employees failed to support the Ironworkers’ organizing drive. Union officials have continued to make similar threats and offers over the past six months.

The charge details how union organizers also resorted to outright bribery to obtain employee support. In August, one union organizer offered a worker $50,000 in exchange for supporting the union’s campaign. Another worker was offered $3,000 to back the union. Other employees were offered weekly payments and waivers for union initiation fees.

The charges will now be investigated by the National Labor Relations Board, a federal agency responsible for administering private-sector labor law.

“Instead of making a straightforward case to employees for their union, Ironworker operatives resorted to threats and outright bribery,” said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. “The union’s underhanded strategy once again emphasizes the importance of secret ballot elections in the workplace, which ensure that employees are free from threats, bribery, or coercion when making their decision about whether or not to support a union.”

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Worker Advocate Files Brief in Federal Dispute over Forced Unionization in Michigan Public Projects

Union bosses seek to uphold discriminatory system in awarding public contracts

Cincinnati, OH (January 24 2013) – Staff attorneys from the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation have filed a brief in support of a Michigan law prohibiting state and local government agencies from imposing so-called "project labor agreements" (PLAs) that require unionized workers for public projects.

Foundation staff attorneys filed the amicus curiae ("friend of the court") brief yesterday in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit located in Cincinnati.

Michigan recently passed a law prohibiting government-mandated PLAs on public construction projects. Shortly thereafter, Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council and Genesse, Lapeer, Shiawassee Building and Construction Trades Council union bosses challenged the law in federal court, claiming federal labor law preempts the state's ability to opt out of mandating PLAs on state-funded public construction projects.

National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys – joining attorneys representing the Associated Builders and Contractors and its Michigan affiliate and the National Federation of Independent Business – argue that a lower court's ruling striking down the new PLA law is both radical and insupportable. The lower court held that federal labor law governing private-sector labor relations somehow compels state governments to require the unionization of workers on public projects.

Foundation attorneys also point out the discriminatory nature of PLAs sacrifices workers' rights of free choice and imposes unwanted union representation on workers if they work on a public project.

Foundation attorneys have filed similar briefs in numerous federal courts supporting the constitutionality of state governments repealing PLA mandates.

"Project Labor Agreements effectively discriminate against the 85 percent of all construction workers who are not under union monopoly control," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "State and local governments owe it to the taxpayers to award public construction contracts to those who will do the best work at the best price, not employers who work with bureaucrats to shove a union down their workers' throats."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.
News Release

Local Cold Storage Warehouse Worker Files Federal Charge against Company for Discrimination

Americold Logistics management seek to put on ice workers’ push to remove union

Rochelle, IL (December 31, 2012) – An Americold Logistics warehouse employee has filed a federal charge against the company for violating her rights.

Karen Cox of Dixon filed the federal charge with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) with free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys.

A local affiliate of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) unionized Cox's workplace in June 2012. However, union and company officials have yet to reach a contract. Cox began a campaign to remove the unwanted union from her workplace. However, Americold company management is denying her the same access it granted union organizers, preventing her from informing her coworkers of the downsides of unionization and asking them to petition the NLRB for a secret ballot election to remove the union hierarchy.

On December 10, Americold management discriminately enforced its policy to bar Cox and other independent-minded employees from collecting petition signatures while off duty, even threatening to fire Cox from her job if she continued – while non-employee union organizers are given wide-ranging access to company facilities to counteract Cox's efforts. The charges allege that Americold Logistics is discriminating against workers like Cox and giving union organizers unlawful support and assistance to squash the workers' efforts to remove the union from their workplace – in violation of NLRB precedent.

Because Illinois does not have Right to Work protections for its workers, Cox and her coworkers undoubtedly will be forced to pay union dues or fees as a condition of employment once company and union officials reach a contract.

"Americold Logistics management gave union organizers license to browbeat employees into acceding to unionization but is discriminating against workers who wish to remain free from union affiliation and dues payments," said Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Foundation. "Unfortunately, companies like Americold all too often sell out workers in exchange for short-term concessions from union officials."

Twenty-four states have Right to Work protections for their workers. Recent public polling shows that 80 percent of Americans and union members support the Right to Work principle of voluntary unionism.

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.

Terms of Web Site Use      Related Links: National Right to Work Committee | National Institute for Labor Relations Research

Copyright © 2015 National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation
National Right to Work Legal Defense and Education Foundation, Inc.
8001 Braddock Road / Springfield, Virginia 22160
(703) 321-8510 | (800) 336-3600 / (703) 321-9613 fax - general (703) 321-9319 fax - legal department