Now that SCOTUS has finally dropped the Janus decision, more litigation is underway.
The National Right to Work Foundation asked the Supreme Court to hear a case that could financially weaken unions by allowing workers to quit them at a faster pace.
In a petition sent last Thursday, the group asked the high court to weigh in on the question of “window periods” — specified dates when workers can opt out of paying union dues. Two Michigan grocers asked their union, United Food & Commercial Workers, to stop automatically deducting dues from their paychecks but did not do so during a specified 15-day window or send in the required certified mail. The plaintiffs argue such restrictions are a violation of federal labor law.
The Sixth Circuit dismissed the case in February, saying the plaintiffs had failed to prove the union acted in “bad faith” and was simply holding itself to the contract signed by their members.
The petition comes on the heel of the Supreme Court’s decision last week in Janus v. AFSCME, which says public sector workers are not obligated to pay non-member fees to a union. Critics warn the decision creates a “free rider” problem, in which workers will leave their union so they can receive the benefits of collective bargaining without having to pay any fees.
President Donald Trump’s labor advisers ignored advice from the National Right to Work Committee not to select another management-side attorney for the NLRB, the group said today.
In a written statement, the pro-business group said it warned the White House that picking a management-side attorney to fill former Chairman Philip Miscimarra’s seat would open that person up to conflicts of interest — forcing recusals and allowing Democratic members of the board to keep the Obama administration’s pro-union decisions intact.
The White House apparently ignored the advice, nominating Morgan Lewis attorney John Ring.
“While the White House was considering whom to nominate to fill the NLRB vacancy, Committee officers counseled Trump staff members not to choose for the slot another management attorney who would have to recuse himself or herself potentially from vast numbers of cases involving clients of the attorney’s former employer,” the committee said. “This advice went unheeded.”
Ring’s nomination is especially problematic, the committee said, given the ethics questions surrounding NLRB member William Emanuel. The former Littler Mendelson attorney was recently the target of two inspector general reports, which concluded he should have recused himself from a case involving the joint employer standard. Emanuel has denied wrongdoing.
“If John Ring’s nomination is soon confirmed, as expected, then for the next year and a half two of the three NLRB members who aren’t profoundly biased in favor of forced unionism may have to recuse themselves from multiple cases,” said Matthew Leen, a National Right to Work Committee vice president. “Recusals could make it virtually impossible, until late 2019 or even 2020, for the board to revisit any more of the dozens of radical, precedent-smashing decisions issued by the Obama NLRB.”
The White House did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Source: POLITICO Pro