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Thursday, June 28, 2018

Supreme Court Janus decision: To see its potential impact, just look at Michigan.

"In a decision likely to weaken organized labor for years—if not decades—to come, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that public sector unions could no longer collect fees from workers whom they represent at the bargaining table, but who choose not to sign up as members. The case, Janus v. AFSCME, essentially extends anti-union “right-to-work” laws to cover every single government employee in America, and will almost certainly lead to a decline in U.S. union membership.



It’s hard to predict exactly how damaging this result will be to the wider labor movement. But one quick, useful case study comes to us from the state of Michigan, which implemented its own right-to-work legislation in 2013.



By law, Americans cannot be forced to join or pay full dues to a labor union. But longstanding legal precedent held that, under a collective bargaining agreement, workers could be required to pay a reduced sum known as “agency” or “fair share” fees meant to cover the cost of the union’s basic services. Twenty-nine states have passed misleadingly labeled “right-to-work” legislation barring these arrangements outright. And in Janus, Justice Samuel Alito used his judicial perch to continue the assault by banning agency fees for all public sector workers, citing first amendment concerns."



Supreme Court Janus decision: To see its potential impact, just look at Michigan.

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