Home | About Your Rights | Request Free Legal Help | Cases and Law | Right to Work States and Laws
Contact Us | News Releases | Free Newsletter | About the Foundation | Give to the Foundation
Many people ” including some in the Congress ” wonder why enforcement of Communications Workers v. Beck is proceeding more slowly than hoped. It’s true that union officials work overtime to keep their illegal forced-dues-for-politics-pipeline flowing.
But enormous opposition is not new to union-abused workers and their National Right to Work Foundation attorneys. To win Beck in the first place, Foundation attorneys had to beat the AFL-CIO and the Solicitor General of the United States, who opposed Harry Beck.
The biggest single obstacle to worker freedom is Big Labor’s secret weapon, the specially granted package of powers and privileges handed to union officials with the 1935 passage of the National Labor Relations Act ” and the NLRB, which is charged with its administration.
NLRB Sidesteps Federal Court Doctrine
In Bloom v. NLRB, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals blasted the NLRB for disobeying its prior ruling in the same case, ordering the Board to replace illegal language requiring workers to “become and remain members in good standing of the union as a condition of employment.” (See feature story, Marquez and Bloom: "Term of Deceit.")
This practice allows union officials to deceive employees into bankrolling the union’s political agenda. Meanwhile, illegally collected dues for politics continue to swell union officials’ coffers.
Because of these illegally worded bargaining agreements, during the recent Teamsters strike, for example, thousands of UPS workers remained in the dark about their right to resign from the union and go to their jobs without legal union retribution.
NLRB Promotes Illegal Union Political Spending
In the Foundation’s Bodenstein v. Carpenters/AFL-CIO case, NLRB General Counsel Fred Feinstein decreed that a worker’s forced-dues share of the AFL-CIO’s $150 million budget is
Knowing that the NLRB had cleared the way for his political spending campaign, AFL-CIO chieftain John Sweeney recently announced that the AFL-CIO’s per capita “assessment” will be increased by five cents per month per member” thus netting the giant union an additional $8 million per year for even more politicking.
Of course, experts estimate that organized labor spent $1/2 billion in 1996. This additional assessment is just more insult added to injury.
Labor Law by Bureaucratic Fiat
In California Saw & Knife Works, Inc., 320 NLRB 224 (1995) ” the first NLRB ruling implementing the Supreme Court’s Beck decision of seven years earlier ” the Board decided to gut rights under Beck and scatter Supreme Court doctrine to the four winds.
After arguments by Foundation attorneys, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of
NLRB: Threats of Violence Against Kids Permissible
This ruling ignored the Board’s own decision in a previous case that “employees who solicit authorization cards should be deemed special agents of the union” for the purpose of evaluating such statements.
But the Board ruled that since threats of violence could not be considered a “purported union policy,” that the union militant in question was not acting as an agent of the union when he made the threat ” only when he proffered the card he had just threatened her into signing.
As a result of this decision, the union certification election which ensued was allowed to stand, even though votes had clearly been obtained under threat of violence.
Federal Courts: NLRB Intransigent, Biased
Federal Courts have blasted the NLRB for its lawlessness:
Other appellate decisions across the country have been no less critical of the Board’s refusal to acknowledge precedent which does not coincide with its own interpretation of labor law, which reeks of an anti-employee bias.
The Foundation’s Mission
We have fought for workers for 30 years to enforce the existing protections against compulsory unionism abuses and to establish new rights through litigation in the courts. Currently, the Foundation’s expert legal team is enforcing the Beck decision in hundreds of cases on behalf of tens of thousands of workers. No nationwide other organization is equipped to help workers confront all these obstacles at the NLRB and elsewhere.