Kissimmee, FL (April 19, 2012) – An Osceola Regional Medical Center employee has joined two of her colleagues and filed a federal charge against a major healthcare union for repeatedly violating federal law by refusing to allow her and her coworkers to exercise their right to refrain from dues-paying union membership under Florida's popular Right to Work law.
With free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, the worker filed the charge with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
In December 2011, she sent a letter notifying Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Healthcare Workers East officials that she was exercising her right to resign from union membership. Instead of acknowledging her request, SEIU officials rejected her letter because it was not "timely." Moreover, the union continues to confiscate union dues from the workers's paycheck.
The SEIU officials' refusal to allow the worker to exercise her right to refrain from union membership clearly violates federal law because any worker has the right to resign from full-dues-paying union membership at any time.
Her federal charge also challenges the legality of the union hierarchy's dues deduction authorization – a document used by union officials to automatically collect dues from employees' paychecks – which restrains a worker's ability to exercise his or her right to resign from union membership.
The worker joins colleagues Eduardo Lopez and Imaculada Camara, two Osceola hospital workers who filed similar charges in January and March respectively.
The charges will be investigated by NLRB Regional Office 12 in Tampa.
"SEIU officials are throwing up illegal and arbitrary roadblocks to prevent workers from exercising their constitutional and statutory right to refrain from formal union membership," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "Schemes like this show that the ultimate goal of union officials is to force workers to hand over more union dues, even when rank-and-file employees want nothing to do with the union."