Washington, DC (April 13, 2005) ¯ The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation’s president today filed a request with the Department of Labor (DOL) asking the agency to investigate and prosecute a top AFL-CIO official for violating a federal disclosure law intended to reveal potential conflicts of interest by union officials.
Foundation attorneys have discovered that the AFL-CIO’s Director of International Affairs, Barbara Shailor, has never filed the mandatory union disclosure forms on which she must disclose compensation received by her husband, Robert Borosage, from the "Campaign for America's Future" (CAF), an organization which he founded and leads. She also must disclose that her husband’s organization has received at least $130,000 in payments from the AFL-CIO in recent years.
Aside from exposure to potential criminal prosecution, the apparent failure to follow federal disclosure law opens up Shailor, Borosage, and CAF to charges of hypocrisy in light of the national notoriety Borosage and CAF recently received in vehemently denouncing Representative Tom DeLay (R-TX) for alleged unethical behavior.
Under the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA), union officers like Shailor must file annually an “LM-30” form to disclose potential conflicts of interest.
“The workers – whose dues collected in many cases as a condition of employment, pay Ms. Shailor’s salary and the AFL-CIO’s contributions to her husband’s organization – are entitled, by law, to know how their money is being spent and whether there has been any self-dealing by union officials,” said Mark Mix, president of the Foundation.
Responding to an extensive wave of union corruption, the U.S. Congress held extensive hearings in 1959, which resulted in passage of the LMRDA. Also known as the Landrum-Griffin Act, the LMRDA requires that among other things, unions, their officers, and key employees must annually disclose certain financial information.
Penalties for willful violation of the LMRDA include up to a $100,000 fine and up to one year in jail. Union officials may also be barred from holding office or even being a union employee for up to 13 years for violating the LMRDA.