It is always interesting to see how unions react when notified our clients are suing to be let out of the union. These government workers have tried multiple times to exercise their rights to resign and stop paying dues to no avail. But once we get involved and a lawsuit was filed, the government unions suddenly try to pacify them.
Tommy Few in California was let out of UTLA and sent a check.
Hawaii client Patricia Grossman was freed from the HGEA and sent a check.
Erich Mandel’s SEIU membership was cancelled and a check sent for some of his past dues.
We’ve had one case though, where not only was there no attempt to placate our client and “make it all go away,” the union didn’t even honor his request to leave during the stipulated opt out window!
Brett Hendrickson had requested several times to leave AFSCME following the Janus decision. Each request was denied and we filed a lawsuit on his behalf. After the lawsuit was filed, his opt out window opened up, and Brett submitted his request as outlined by the union.
The union failed to notify his employer, so because of their error, he’s now stuck having his dues deducted until the next opt out window, or until his lawsuit changes a system that is not serving its workers.
These extremes illustrate how broken and unfair the system is. We’re working to fix it so all government employees can freely exercise their rights to stay in or leave a union without requiring lawyers to help them overcome all the bureaucracy and special interests.