Union leaders cheered Tuesday as the U.S. Supreme Court tied, 4-4, on a key labor case, Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association et al. The tie upholds lower court rulings for the teachers and for unions’ right to collect agency fees. AFSCME Council 26 Executive Director Carl Goldman called it “a significant victory for all working people and a defeat for corporate interests.” Goldman added that “We should enjoy the victory but get ready for additional cases that are in the pipeline that aim to take away our rights and bust our unions.” Unions appeared headed for a 5-4 loss in the Supreme Court after the Jan. 11 argument of the case, but Justice Antonin Scalia, leader of the court’s conservative bloc, died a month later, and no successor has been confirmed. “Today, working people have persevered in the face of another attack on our rights,” said AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka. “All over the country working people are showing that we won’t allow wealthy special interests or their politicians to stand in our way to join collectively and make workplaces better all across America. In the face of these attacks we are more committed than ever to ensuring that everyone has the right to speak up together for a better life.”
- includes reporting by Mark Gruenberg, PAI; photo: January 11 Supreme Court demo; photo by Chris Garlock/Union City
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