The Detroit News
Earlier this year, UAW local 898 officials displayed their political views for everyone who drove by the union hall. “Recall Gov. Snyder, sign up here!” was the message glaring from the parking lot sign for all passers-by to see.
A recent Harris poll shows that 60 percent of union households say that unions are too involved in politics, and we know that 40 percent or more of union households vote Republican. Unfortunately, union members who disagree with these partisan political attacks are forced, as a condition of employment, to financially support this message.
Federal laws are supposed to restrict union officials from using regular dues for political purposes. Regrettably, it still happens all the time.
In a 1988 Supreme Court decision called Communication Workers of America vs. Beck, unions were forbidden to collect full union dues from non-members; only those dues that are supposed to reflect the true cost to the union as a collective bargaining agent. In other words, members could choose to resign their union membership and then only pay what is called the “agency fee” to keep their job.