Employee Rights Group Reacts to Attorney General Abbott’s Long-sought Legal Action to Enforce Texas’ Right to Work Law
**Corpus Christi & El Paso, TX** (July 24, 2007) – National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation Vice President Stefan Gleason made the following statement regarding Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott’s long-sought legal action this afternoon to initiate the state’s enforcement of the highly popular Right to Work law:
“The National Right to Work Foundation welcomes the Attorney General to our ongoing battle to prevent the erosion of Texans' Right to Work. No employee should be forced to pay union dues just to get or keep a job. But the violations Foundation attorneys uncovered in Corpus Christi and El Paso may only be the tip of the iceberg.
“Evidence obtained several months ago by Foundation attorneys during a federal labor board trial suggests that Big Labor's phony 'exclusive federal enclave' scheme to violate the Right to Work law is widespread. Foundation attorneys are pressing ahead to protect all employees who are victim to this compulsory unionism scheme, and we urge the Attorney General to do the same.
“Union officials must be put on notice that a Texan's Right to Work is sacred. Every violation must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, or union officials will only be emboldened.”
**Background**: National Right to Work Foundation attorneys are currently representing two Texas security guards in cases before the National Labor Relations Board and have convinced federal officials to prosecute the Security, Police and Fire Professionals of America (SPFPA) union for unlawfully threatening the security guards’ jobs. Foundation attorneys first brought Texas Right to Work law violations to the attention of the Office of the Attorney General in November 2006. Today’s action is the first formal legal action taken by the State.
In April, Foundation attorneys filed federal charges for Carlos Banuelos, an Asset Protection and Security Services guard in Corpus Christi, against the SPFPA union and his employer after union officials unlawfully threatened to have him (and other employees) fired for asserting their legal right to refrain from formal union membership and payment of union dues.
Meanwhile, in recent days, Foundation attorneys successfully secured the reinstatement of Juan Vielma, a security guard for AKAL Security in El Paso, whom union officials had illegally suspended without pay for over a year for refusal to pay dues. Agreeing with charges filed by Foundation attorneys last November, a federal Administrative Law Judge ruled in June that SPFPA union officials had no legal authority to compel Vielma to pay dues.
Texas is one of 22 states that have a Right to Work law, ensuring that union membership and dues payment are strictly voluntary.