On June 27th, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that public sector employees cannot be forced to pay union dues if they do not want to be members of the union. Though the decision does not apply to private sector employees – including airline workers – several unions representing airline employees spoke out strongly against the decision.
Machinists union president Robert Martinez:
AFA President Sara Nelson:
Are we at war? Do we need a revolution? Comparing mandatory dues to freedoms promised by our forefathers?
The IAM and AFA would have Delta people believe that forced dues collection is anti-worker. Don’t be fooled. The IAM and AFA are businesses and their top priority is to collect tens of millions of dollars in mandatory dues money from Delta people.
The case is called Janus v. AFSCME Council 31. The worker who brought the case, an employee of the State of Illinois, argued that he opposed “many of the public positions that [his union] advocates,” and that forcing him to pay dues to the union violated his Constitutional right to free speech. The Supreme Court agreed and ruled that public-sector employees that don’t want to be members of the union that represents their co-workers cannot be forced to pay dues to the union.
Airline employees are not impacted. Airline union contracts usually require that workers pay dues in order to maintain their employment.