Worker freedom from forced unionism is advancing, but there is still much work to be done
Springfield, VA (August 31, 2018) – Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation and the National Right to Work Committee, issued the following statement on the occasion of Labor Day 2018.
This Labor Day, National Right to Work is celebrating a landmark year for workers’ rights across the country. As we celebrate this Labor Day, we should remember that there is still work to be done to protect all employees from compulsory unionism’s abuses.
In June, the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation won a historic victory at the U.S. Supreme Court in Janus v. AFSCME when the High Court declared it unconstitutional to force public sector employees to pay union dues and fees as a condition of employment. Because of the ruling, every government employee across the nation can now exercise their First Amendment right to choose whether or not to financially support a union.
The Janus decision has opened doors for independent-minded workers to rise up and challenge union officials’ abuses of their rights. Foundation staff attorneys are helping thousands of government employees in several class action lawsuits reclaim the potentially hundreds of millions of dollars in forced union dues that were seized in violation of their First Amendment rights.
In the private sector, employees in the 23 states that lack Right to Work protections are still forced to hand over a portion of their paycheck to union officials. Millions of workers pay that tribute not because they freely choose to associate with a union, but because government has granted union officials the power to order a worker fired solely for refusing to pay fees. Until every worker in America is freed from forced unionism, our important work must continue.
With the election season swinging into high gear, the fight for freedom in the workplace faces new challenges. Even though polls show union members, like all Americans, strongly support the Right to Work principle that union membership and dues payment should be strictly voluntary, Big Labor is spending millions of dollars collected from rank-and-file employees on campaign contributions, lobbying, and other political activities to undermine Right to Work.
The National Right to Work Foundation remains committed to enforcing worker protections while establishing new precedents. After the Janus decision, the Foundation launched a Janus Task Force designed to connect public sector workers with information about the new precedent and access to free legal aid. Union officials must be held accountable when they abuse employees’ constitutional rights, and Foundation staff attorneys remain vigilant to ensure the Janus precedent is enforced. Meanwhile, the National Right to Work Committee is advocating for legislation to repeal union bosses forced dues powers.
This Labor Day, as we celebrate hard-working Americans from all walks of life, the National Right to Work community is proud to be working towards the goal of ending forced unionism in America once and for all.
A video version of this statement is available here.
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.