Indianapolis, IN (December 17, 2014) – The Indiana Supreme Court today once again rejected a union boss-backed challenge to Indiana’s 2012 Right to Work law. The case is a lawsuit filed by the United Steelworker (USW) union that makes a number of dubious claims in its challenge to the law, including the argument that unions have a right to force workers to pay for their unwanted services.
The Indiana Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s ruling. Early last month, the court also upheld the law as constitutional in a different case involving the same issues. And a broader challenge was rejected in September by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
Three Indiana workers, Douglas Richards, David Brubaker, and Michael Miller, filed an amicus curiae brief defending the law with free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys. The brief was filed together with the National Federation of Independent Business Small Business Legal Center.
The three workers who filed the brief are or were employed in workplaces where a forced dues contract was in place between their employers and union hierarchies before the Right to Work law was enacted. Consequently, the workers have been forced to pay union dues just to keep their jobs, despite the fact that they do not belong to the union nor sought the union’s so-called “representation.”
Patrick Semmens, vice president of the National Right to Work Foundation, issued the following statement in the wake of the court’s ruling:
“Today, the Indiana Supreme Court once again upheld the statutory and civil rights protections enshrined in Indiana’s Right to Work law. We are pleased that the court struck down this blatantly frivolous union legal challenge, as the constitutionality of state Right to Work laws is a long-settled question.
“Union officials have now failed twice before the state supreme court — and in federal court — to overturn the will of the people and protect their government-granted privileges to force workers into paying union tribute as a condition of their employment. We applaud the workers who diligently and courageously stood up to defend their rights under the state’s Right to Work law to refrain from union membership and dues payments.”
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 around 250 cases nationwide per year.