Mandatory Union Fees Divide Demonstrators as Supreme Court Hears Arguments


Government employees who don’t support the political activism of union leaders should not be forced to fund that activism, said demonstrators who turned out Monday at the Supreme Court building to support a free speech challenge of government-imposed union mandates.

As the Supreme Court held oral arguments inside, The Daily Signal spoke with supporters and opponents of right-to-work laws that prohibit employers and unions from entering into agreements that require workers to join unions and pay union dues.

Each side took to the microphones to make their case outside the court.

“Workers who don’t join the union are still entitled to the benefits unions win for them,” David Barrows, a former union member who lives in Washington, D.C., told The Daily Signal.

But Rebecca Friedrichs, a California elementary school teacher who was the lead plaintiff in a related Supreme Court case in 2016, sees it differently.

“Public sector unions collect billions of dollars from middle-class workers who are forced to fund a political agenda that is very much against their values,” Friedrichs told The Daily Signal. “Average Americans should know that this agenda directly affects their lives.”

Turning out for Illinois state government employee Mark Janus are, from left, Lindsay Killen, vice president for …read more