Home and Childcare Providers ask the court to strike down unwanted ‘representation’ as a violation of the First Amendment
Washington, D.C. (June 6, 2017) – With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation and the Illinois-based Liberty Justice Center staff attorneys, six personal care and child care providers today petitioned the Supreme Court to strike down a compulsory unionism scheme that grants Service Employees International Union (SEIU) officials exclusive monopoly “bargaining” powers with state government for thousands of Illinois caregivers – including many who never joined the union and oppose the union’s so-called ‘representation.’
In the brief, Foundation staff attorneys contend that the state law infringes on the providers’ First Amendment rights by forcing them to associate with a union they do not wish to join or support. Granting the union exclusive power to deal with the State of Illinois over caregiving practices violates the caregivers’ right to choose with whom they associate to petition their own government.
The caregiver’s petition to the Supreme Court in Hill, follows the Right to Work Foundation’s landmark 2014 Supreme Court victory in Harris v. Quinn, which was also filed on behalf of several home-based Illinois care providers. That decision prohibited union officials from collecting mandatory dues or fees from home-based caregivers.
The Hill petition argues that although the Harris case dealt with compelled fees, because the Court ruled that the state’s justification for mandatory fees was insufficient under the First Amendment, the Supreme Court should strike down the compelled association on the same grounds. The petition asks the Court to take the case so that it can apply the same standard to the First Amendment infringements created when state law forces home care providers to accept a government-appointed monopoly union agent against their will. Foundation staff attorneys have also helped home and childcare providers challenge similar schemes in Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Oregon, and Washington State.
“It is outrageous that across the country state laws force home and child care providers to accept unwanted ‘representation’ from a union they have no interest in joining or supporting,” commented Foundation President Mark Mix. “This is a clear violation of providers’ freedom of association and we are hopeful that this case will build on the Foundation’s landmark 2014 victory in Harris v. Quinn and end these corrupt forced unionism schemes for good.”
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, assists thousands of employees in more than 250 cases nationwide per year.