The Supreme Court will be hearing oral arguments in a case, Janus v. AFSCME, that threatens to weaken the rights of all union members. This case has the potential to make our union an “open shop,” weakening our power to negotiate and enforce contracts, protect our jobs and our colleges, and enhance our wages and benefits.
Oral arguments are scheduled for February 26, with a ruling in spring 2018. Because of the current makeup of the Supreme Court, this case will likely overturn Abood v. Detroit, where the Supreme Court affirmed that it was constitutional for public sector unions to collect fair share fees (agency fees in CT) from employees who choose not to join a union, but who the union is legally required to represent in negotiations with the employer.
As all public employees enjoy the benefits, job security, and other protections the union negotiates, it is only fair that all employees contribute to the cost of obtaining those benefits and protections. Without this financial stability, the union’s collective power can be seriously weakened as members can be divided when a “free rider” effect erodes the solidarity encouraged by a “fair share” approach.
We are asking all members to sign a new membership form, which you can now do online here.
We are stronger together. Together, we were able to negotiate a contract that made gains for ALL members and protects our jobs, improves our wages, and saves our healthcare and retirement benefits. Without our union collective bargaining agreements, the BOR would be able to make unilateral changes. Without a SEBAC agreement, the General Assembly would have been able to cut our healthcare and pensions unilaterally.
We still have work to do and improvements to make, but we hope you consider reaffirming your support for the 4Cs and sign a membership form here.