If you work for a local, state or federal government employer, you have the right to decide whether you want to join a union at your workplace thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Janus v. AFSCME. If you decide union membership isn’t for you, then you are not obligated to pay the union at your workplace any kind of dues or fees.
But your rights don’t end there. You also have the right to be informed of your options. The Janus decision means all government employees have specific “Janus rights”:
Your government employer should inform you of your rights.
You have the right to decide whether or not you want to join a union.
You cannot be forced to pay anything to a union.
The government must get your permission to deduct union dues from your paycheck.
Employer-provided benefits are not tied to your union membership status.
You have a right to talk to your employer about your salary and benefits, union membership and your Janus rights.
If you started a government job after June 2018 and you were not informed that union membership was optional, we may be able to help you resign from the union and get a refund of any dues you paid.
Contact us via this form.
What’s the catch?
No catch. The Liberty Justice Center is a not-for-profit public interest law firm that represented plaintiff Mark Janus, a child support specialist from Illinois, in the landmark case Janus v. AFSCME. We’re now working with other government employees around the country to make sure their constitutional rights and the rights of all public servants are honored.
People Like You: Meet Sue Halloran
In October 2018, Sue Halloran took a job as a senior account clerk in the business office of Inver Hills Community College. She was approached multiple times at work by an AFSCME Council 5 representative who wanted her to join the union. Eventually, Sue was pulled out of an office training because the union representative needed to speak to her.
He had a dues authorization form pulled up on his tablet computer and told her to sign it. He did not tell her how much union dues would cost nor did he mention she had the right not to join. She felt pressured and was anxious to get back to the training with her colleagues, so she signed.
The next day she discovered the dues would cost $700 year and immediately tried to cancel. Her requests were repeatedly ignored or denied. Fortunately, Sue got in touch with us and we’re now representing her pro bono in her lawsuit against AFSCME Council 5 to end her union membership and refund the dues she was forced to pay.