Chicago Tribune Editorial: Why Gov. Pritzker should say no to state lawmaker efforts to skirt the impact of Janus.
The Chicago Tribune Editorial Board today weighed in on state legislative threats to last year’s landmark Janus v. AFSCME Supreme Court ruling. As the editorial notes: “The Supreme Court ruled in [Janus’] favor last summer, deciding in a 5-4 opinion that mandatory dues collection from nonunion members violated their constitutional rights.” States from California and Oregon to New Jersey and Massachusetts have either introduced or passed union-friendly legislation seeking to mitigate the SCOTUS ruling.
The latest state to try to limit the Janus decision? Illinois.
The editorial states:
Lawmakers during the fall veto session sent to Gov. J.B. Pritzker legislation that would make it easier for unions to recruit members and harder for employees to know their rights under Janus. Public employers — mostly governments — would be required to provide the names, addresses and contact information of their employees, including personal email addresses and cellphone numbers on file, directly to union bargaining units. The legislation also severely limits the ability of employers to inform their workers about the choice to join a union or not…
For workers who don’t want to join a union, the window to opt out would be shortened under the measure. And the bill protects unions from being forced to repay dues previously surrendered by workers like Janus.
While the Supreme Court ruled in Janus’ favor in June 2018, it’s clear the fight for worker freedom is no-where near finished. Not only are a number of states pushing anti-Janus legislation – many public workers are looking to get the money they previously paid back – including Mark Janus. The former child support specialist is looking to get about $3,000 in dues returned to him from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31, now that the Supreme Court ruled the mandatory collection of dues unconstitutional
The editorial concludes:
If Pritzker signs the bill, he will demonstrate once again who actually runs Illinois state government. It’s not his administration. It’s not the department heads. It’s the public employees unions who represent more than 90% of the state workforce. They already have the power. Governor, why give them more?