Supreme Courts Splits: Public Sector Unions Saved

The United States Supreme Court split 4-4 on a ruling as to whether or not public sector workers are required to pay dues. As a result of the tie the ruling of the lower court will be upheld. The case, called Friedrichs v. California Teachers’ Association, was filed by a group of teachers in Los Angeles. The teachers in the case felt that although they were reaping the benefits of the union bargaining their wages, working conditions, healthcare, pension and job protections, for some reason they should not have to pay dues.

In areas of the country where state legislatures have stripped public sector unions of their ability to collect dues the results have been disastrous for working people. In Wisconsin public sector membership has fallen by over a third along with wages, benefits and working conditions.

The case has been remanded to California’s Ninth Circuit Court where judges found earlier that free riding and taking the benefits of unionization without paying for it is not OK.

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