Fairfield, Calif. (July 23, 2003) — A Fairfield area resident employed on a part-time basis as a weekend lab technician for Anheuser-Busch has filed federal charges against the local chapter of the Teamsters union for failing to properly inform her of her right to refrain from joining the union and the right to refrain from supporting the union’s political and ideological causes.
Obtaining free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, Catharine Anderson filed unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) after officials of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 896, charged her excessive union fees, misrepresented her rights, and threatened to have her fired for refusing to comply with the union hierarchy’s illegal demands.
“The bully tactics used by the Teamsters hierarchy are despicable,” said Stefan Gleason, Vice President of the National Right to Work Foundation. “Unfortunately, so long as union officials are given compulsory unionism privileges, workers will continue to suffer such abuse.”
In addition, Anderson is charging that Teamsters union officials not only failed to notify her and her fellow workers of their right to refrain from union membership, but repeatedly threatened to fire them for refusing to pay full union dues.
By doing so, Teamsters union officials violated worker protections recognized in the U.S. Supreme Court ruling Communications Workers of America v. Beck, a case argued and won by Foundation attorneys. Under the Beck ruling, workers have the option to refrain from full membership, and pay only those costs to the union that are related to collective bargaining.
Teamsters union officials have also charged Anderson a “hiring hall” fee, even though she was not hired through, and never used, the hiring hall. Anderson is demanding that the union return all of the money she was illegally charged as the “hiring hall” fee.