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BY: Bill McMorris
The Los Angeles teachers union may have just ended a lengthy strike over a contract dispute, but could soon find itself back in court as a local educator filed a class action suit over forced dues.
School - Teacher - Class - Action - Suit
A public school teacher has filed a class action suit against United Teachers Los Angeles, alleging that it illegally subjected her to a strict window period for resigning her membership. The teacher attempted to cut off her dues payments following the Supreme Court's Janus ruling, which declared mandatory fee payments unconstitutional, but was rebuffed by union officials. The suit argues that the "restrictive" resignation policy violates the First Amendment rights of teachers.
"After being notified of Seager’s decision to revoke any prior dues authorization, Los Angeles District and UTLA, directly or indirectly, nonetheless continues to deduct dues from her paychecks, in furtherance of UTLA's restrictive revocation policies," the complaint filed by the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation says. "Unless enjoined from so doing, UTLA and Los Angeles District will continue to collect/deduct union dues from employees."
UTLA - Requests - Comment
UTLA did not return requests for comment.
The suit was filed on Tuesday evening after the union finished a six-day strike that left half a million students out of school. The school district offered the union several key concessions, including a prospective cap on charter schools—which often operate without unions—in the city, as well as an effort to cut the number of standardized tests used to evaluate student progress. The work stoppage cost as much as $125 million, according to Bob Wickers, a vice president at the pro-free market Freedom Foundation.
Public - Government - Union - Deals - Public
"If the public has to pay for these government union deals, the public should have access to the labor negotiations," Wickers said. "It is irresponsible for the second-largest school...
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