Yesterday, the Indiana Supreme Court rejected the AFL-CIO’s claim that the state’s Right to Work law violated the Indiana Constitution. The AFL-CIO had argued that the law gives the state too much power over the unions by compelling them to represent workers whether they paid dues or not. The Court, however, disagreed:
“We disagree,” the justices said in their decision. “The union’s federal obligation to represent all employees in a bargaining unit is optional; it occurs only when the union elects to be the exclusive bargaining agent, for which it is justly compensated by the right to bargain exclusively with the employer.”
The AFL-CIO and Local 150 of the International Union of Operating Engineers slammed the ruling in a statement issued after the decision was rendered.
“We maintain our commitment that this ‘right to work’ law forces Local 150 and other unions in Indiana to provide services without compensation. The court’s decision centered on its ruling that unions can form ‘members only’ bargaining units, which we know through decades of legal precedent to be unlawful,” union president James M. Sweeney said in a statement.
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