Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Union Dues, Don’ts

labor unions, Membership Renewal, Supreme Court, force, coercion, signing, scab, membership

You may soon be able to shred your union card — if you are careful.

By “you” I mean You, the reluctant union member.

If you’re not one, though, perhaps you know somebody who is, someone who’d be happy to learn that the Supreme Court is on the verge of dealing a huge setback to coercive unionism.

John Hinderaker explains at Power Line. The Supreme Court is expected to soon decide a major case in a way that “bar[s] public employees from being forced into unions, or from being required to support unions via the fiction of ‘fair share contributions.’ ” (Much of that money goes straight to Democratic Party coffers.) With Neil Gorsuch now on the bench, a 4-4 holding pattern is expected to become a 5-4 decision in favor of plaintiffs suing for freedom from mandatory union membership.

Sounds good.

Problem is, though, that union officials are working to trick members into paying dues in perpetuity. For example, Education Minnesota is trying to con its 86,000 teachers into signing “Membership Renewal” forms assenting to automatic renewal of fees – unless the signatory makes a special effort to opt out.

The union hopes members will sign the cards and forget about them, continuing to fund the unions, and Democratic politics, indefinitely — even if the high court rescues everyone from mandatory membership.

So, if you happen to be trapped in a union at the moment — watch what you sign. And watch the news.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

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By: CS Admin


  1. “So, if you happen to be trapped in a union at the moment”

    Why talk to people who don’t exist?

    The US does not have labor conscription. Anyone who doesn’t want to be in a union can quit the job any time. Workers are no more “trapped in unions” than they are “trapped in dress codes” or “trapped in shift schedules.” Don’t want to be in a union? Don’t join a union.

    • Andrew Terhune says:

      This is about government unions, not private sector ones. Government is a monopoly. If you want to work for your government, you should not have to join a union you might not agree with.

    • Hi Thomas Knapp – I exist, thanks, and would like to leave the “Graduate Student Union” to which I am forced to pay dues, although I was able to “leave” and no longer a “member.”

      “Don’t want to be in a union? Don’t join a union.”

      I never “joined” but am forced to pay dues.

  2. vic justes says:

    I’m surprised you didn’t remind your readers about what the left’s hero, FDR, thought of government unions.

  3. Pat says:

    I wonder how ‘automatic renewal’ would work.  Give them a credit card number?   You can always switch to a different card later.  When you retire from your teaching job, do you still need to be in the union to get earned benefits or perks?   If not, then the first time you see the dues on your card, call the credit card company and contest it.   Let the credit card company know such charges are no longer authorized.

  4. Paul Jacob says:

    Thomas — There is government coercion involved in the formation of unions and business negotiations with unions. It isn’t the same thing as a dress code.

    Vic — Good point. I’ll have to save that for another commentary. Never can fit it all in, but FDR’s opposition to government employee unions is noteworthy, especially since in recent times have seen a massive increase in unionization of government workers.

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