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Don’t be fooled: PRO Act is Anti-Worker

Tomorrow the United States House of Representatives is expected to vote on the PRO Act (H.R. 2474), a bill that would eliminate workers’ rights to choose to join a union. Catrin Wigfall, a policy fellow at Center of the American Experiment specializing in education and labor policy, is calling on Minnesota’s congressional delegation to oppose the bill. “The PRO Act is the opposite of pro-worker. It puts the interests of labor union bosses ahead of American workers and taxpayers,” said Wigfall. “This bill is an attempt to handcuff workers to unions by eliminating workers’ constitutionally protected rights and privacies. Minnesota’s congressional delegation should defend their constituents from union coercion and recognize...

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Gov. Walz must restore Minnesota public employees’ First Amendment rights

Alaska Governor Michael J. Dunleavy issued an executive order Thursday afternoon to bring the state into compliance with the 2018 United States Supreme Court’s ruling in Janus v. AFSCME. “A contract that is unconstitutional is no contract at all,” said Alaska’s Attorney General Kevin Clarkson, after issuing a formal opinion that the state did not have the required “clear and compelling evidence” of affirmative consent from public employees before deducting union dues from their paychecks. The executive order will give public employees in Alaska the choice of affirmatively opting-in to union dues deduction, and also allow them to revoke their decision...

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Center of the American Experiment launches Employee Freedom awareness campaign as school district employee files lawsuit to challenge union membership

Public employees joined Center of the American Experiment to celebrate a new awareness campaign aimed at educating their colleagues about their Constitutional right to free speech, and by extension, their right to opt-out of public union membership. The Supreme Court decision in Janus v. AFSCME reaffirmed public employees’ right to freedom of association and restored their First Amendment right to keep their jobs without funding a workplace union.  Yet, Minnesota’s public unions are deliberately creating obstacles for union members who wish to resign from union membership. And public employers are complicit because they are honoring union dues-authorization cards that were...

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Report reveals how Minnesota teachers in the classroom today have not voted in an election for exclusive representation by a union

Media Contact: Kim Crockett, Vice President & General Counsel; [email protected], 612.388.2820 (Golden Valley, MN) A report released by Center of the American Experiment uses original research to confirm that, except for a few teachers, none of Minnesota teachers in the classroom today voted in an election for exclusive representation by a union. Teachers in Minnesota’s K-12 schools are exclusively represented by a union and collective bargaining framework that has not been evaluated by teachers or lawmakers since its formal enactment in 1971. While teachers who belong to the union are eligible to vote on the contract negotiated by the union with their employer...

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Report reveals how Minnesota teachers are trapped by arbitrary union terms, forcing them to fund Education Minnesota’s partisan political spending

 Media Contact: Kim Crockett. Esq. (612.388.2820) [email protected]ent.org (Golden Valley, MN) A report released by Center of the American Experiment reveals how Minnesota teachers are trapped by arbitrary union terms, forcing them to fund Education Minnesota’s partisan political spending even after the Janus decision. Last June, the U.S. Supreme Court in Janus v. Afscme said that public employers can no longer collect “fair-share” agency fees from employees who are not members of their workplace union. Minnesota public employers have complied with that order. The court also said that public employers and unions should not assume that employees, including people who had previously signed union cards,...

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Brainerd City Clerk First in the Nation to Successfully Challenge “Window Period” and Leave Public Union

BRAINERD, MN—A clerk for the Brainerd Police Department who filed a federal lawsuit against IBEW Local 31 has become the first public employee in the nation to successfully challenge her public employee union’s “window period” designed to prevent her from immediately invoking her constitutional right not to pay fees and leave the union. “This is exciting news for public employees all over the State of Minnesota and a warning to public employers,” said Kim Crockett, Vice President and General Counsel at Center of the American Experiment. “Public employers are not telling employees they have the right to keep their jobs without...

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Center of the American Experiment Files Amicus Brief with U.S. Supreme Court Challenging Forced Exclusive Representation by Unions: 17 Groups Sign on to CAE’s Petition

Media Contact: Kim Crockett, Vice President and General Counsel [email protected] Direct:  612.584.4563 Mobile: 612.388.2820 Center of the American Experiment filed an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to hear Uradnik v. Inter Faculty Organization, which calls for an immediate end to laws that force public-sector employees to accept a union’s exclusive representation. The case, filed by The Buckeye Institute, is the first major post-Janus labor challenge filed with the United States Supreme Court. The counsel of record is Andrew Grossman of BakerHostetler. Upon filing the brief, Kim Crockett, vice president and general counsel of Center of the American Experiment, said: “Professor Kathy Uradnik, from right here in...

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Supreme Court Rules Public Employees Are Not Required to Fund Unions in Big Win for First Amendment Rights

    Media Contact: Kim Crockett 612.388.2820 [email protected] Decision affects thousands of Minnesota teachers, state and local government employees In a landmark decision for First Amendment rights, the U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that public employees cannot be compelled to pay union fees as a condition of employment. The 5-4 ruling in Janus v. AFSCME restores the First Amendment rights of freedom of association and free speech to more than five million government employees nationwide. The decision is likely to decrease the funding and political clout of powerful public employee unions in Minnesota and 21 other non-right-to-work states. Weighing a case brought by Mark Janus, an Illinois...

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Educated Teachers Project Launches Statewide Information Campaign

A new project being launched on National Teacher Appreciation Day, Educated Teachers MN aims to inform and empower Minnesota K-12 educators by raising awareness of a U.S. Supreme Court case widely expected to end the forced payment of union dues and fees by teachers and other government employees as a condition of employment. In 2016-2017 Education Minnesota collected over $50 million in dues and fees from 75,000 teachers statewide that were used for collective bargaining, lobbying and advancing the union’s political agenda. But Education Minnesota, AFSCME-5 and other statewide public employee unions are already bracing for the potential loss of thousands of...

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1st Amendment Challenge to Mandatory Union Fees Could Free All Public Employees From Forced Union Fees

Education Minnesota tactics cited in briefs before the Court The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday heard the long-anticipated case brought by Mark Janus, an Illinois child support specialist who’s asking the Court to end mandatory “agency” or “fair-share” fees. [caption id="attachment_9418" align="alignright" width="227"] Mark Janus[/caption] Center of the American Experiment has joined Cato Institute and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) in an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to rule in favor of Mark Janus. The legal theory of the case is that all public-sector collective bargaining is political. Several other briefs before the Court cite an opinion editorial by Kim Crockett...

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