Union officials stonewall workers' attempts to refrain from union membership and full dues payments
Los Angeles, CA (October 22, 2014) – A group of Los Angeles Unified School District workers have filed a federal class-action lawsuit against the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 99 for violating their rights.
With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation-provided staff attorneys, Los Angeles school district building and grounds keeper Douglas Kennedy; bus drivers Eduardo Berumen and Griselda Moran; and cafeteria worker Magi Shanagian filed the lawsuit with the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
In the complaint, the school employees detail how SEIU Local 99 union officials denied their several requests, in one case dating back to October 12, 2012, to refrain from full dues paying union membership.
Because California does not have Right to Work protections for workers, workers can be forced to pay union dues and fees to an unwanted union as a condition of employment. However, under Foundation-won U.S. Supreme Court precedent, workers who refrain from union membership can also refrain from paying for union politics and members-only events.
Despite the workers' requests to refrain from union membership and full union dues payments, the Los Angeles Unified School District continues to confiscate full union dues from the workers' paychecks at SEIU Local 99 officials' behest. The workers are also challenging SEIU Local 99's agreement provision with the school district that illegally restricts workers' ability to resign union membership and dues payments to a period of 30 days over the life of an agreement, which is often for a period of three years.
"SEIU officials are stonewalling workers' attempts to refrain from paying for the union bosses' radical political agenda," said Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Foundation. "This case underscores the need for California to pass a Right to Work law making union membership and dues payments strictly voluntary."