San Jacinto, Calif. (August 6, 2002) – In response to charges filed by attorneys with the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, San Jacinto Education Association (SJEA) officials affiliated with the California Teacher Association (CTA) and the National Education Association (NEA) unions have dropped their demands against a local teacher whose sincere religious beliefs prevented him from joining and supporting the union. “No one should be forced to support a union that they find morally offensive,” said Stefan Gleason, Vice President of the National Right to Work Foundation. “Without the protections of a Right to Work law, Californians will continue to suffer discrimination as a result of forced unionism.” Last Fall, Rick Still learned that the SJEA and its affiliates were advocating policies he considered morally objectionable, including support for publicly funding of abortions and special rights for homosexuals. Rather than support an organization whose agenda compromised his Christian beliefs, Still asked SJEA officials to remove the conflict by allowing him to divert his compulsory dues to a mutually agreed upon charity. When union officials refused his request, Still contacted attorneys at the National Right to Work Foundation, who helped him file unfair labor practice charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, union officials must accommodate sincere religious objectors by allowing employees to make charitable contributions in lieu of paying union fees. Under legal pressure, the union hierarchy has now agreed to allow the San Jacinto Unified School District teacher to divert his forced dues to a local college scholarship fund, instead of funding the union. ‘“Unfortunately, this not an isolated incident. Teachers across the country, regardless of their faith, are being shaken down to pay for the NEA’s radical agenda,” said Gleason.