Supreme Court Case Threatens to Undermine Unions Nationwide

September 2017

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it will decide Janus v. AFSCME Council 31. This case has the potential to make the entire public sector right-to-work nationwide—an attack on the heart of our parent union, AFSCME, composed mostly of public sector workers. It seeks to undermine the freedom of those workers to join together in strong unions to advocate for themselves, their families and communities.

Unions have played a critical role in building and protecting the middle class in America. They provide hard working people economic stability for their families and give them the tools to build a good life, home and education for themselves and their children. Through collective bargaining, members of strong unions have won victories that help entire communities – like our own safer nurse-staffing levels in California which help patients, and smaller classroom sizes that help students.

Unions are more important than ever – and Americans know it. As union membership has decreased because of attacks on working people, income inequality has risen in the U.S. Source. Fortunately, new Gallup research shows that more than 3 in 5 Americans have a favorable view of labor unions. That’s the highest level in nearly 15 years – and support is even stronger among young people. Unions use their collective voice to advocate for policies that benefit all working people – like increases to the minimum wage, affordable health care, and good public schools.

The Supreme Court is expected to hear oral arguments in the case in January, with a decision to be issued as early as April or as late as June, 2018.