Worker Advocate Praises U.S. Supreme Court Review of Ninth Circuit Ruling Endorsing Coercive Union Organizing
**Springfield, VA (November 20, 2007)** – Stefan Gleason, vice president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, made the following statement in response to today’s granting of certiorari by the U.S. Supreme Court in the Foundation-supported Chamber v. Brown appeal.
An en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit had reversed two of its earlier appellate rulings by a vote of 8-3, upholding a state law that will effectively force coercive union organizing upon employees of private companies who receive state funds. Foundation attorneys filed an amicus curiae (“friend of the court” brief) urging U.S. Supreme Court review.
“In a controversial decision with national implications, the activist Ninth Circuit in Chamber v. Brown upheld a California law which increases pressure on employees to join potentially unwanted unions.
“This special-interest state statute is pre-empted by federal labor law, which is supposed to protect employees from pressure to unionize by union officials and other entities. We’re thankful the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case.
“The practical effect is that employees of private employers wishing to accept funds from the state are denied truthful information regarding the downsides of unionization. Their employers could ultimately be blackballed from government contracts unless they clear the path for union organizers to recruit new forced-dues-paying union members. Moreover, union organizers will insist that the state law entitles them to sweeping access to company facilities, employees’ private personal information, and the power to sidestep the less-abusive secret ballot election process for determining whether employees actually want a union.
“California officials are using the heavy hand of government to trample upon workers’ rights. Because union hierarchies seem to be having difficulties persuading employees to join unions voluntarily, they have resorted to coercive tactics in order to maintain the flow of forced union dues.
“The National Right to Work Foundation denounces this rogue appellate ruling and applauds the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to review it.”