With a few session days left, lawmakers must prioritize legislation to align state law with federal law and tell workers their rights.
HB 2571 enforces the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Janus v. AFSCME, which freed public sector workers from paying agency fees to a union they didn’t join, just to keep their jobs.
However, the decision cannot enforce itself and nearly one-third of impacted workers aren’t aware of the case.
Representative Kate Klunk’s HB 2571 would remove state laws authorizing agency fees in direct contradiction of the court decision. Further, it would require employers to alert public sector workers they don’t have to join a union or pay a fee if they reject membership.
The legislation passed the House Labor Committee last week, despite all Democratic members walking out before the end of the meeting. While some representatives claimed the walkout invalidated the vote, yesterday representatives voted to uphold the committee vote and prime this needed legislation for a full House vote.
Advancing this legislation is becoming more urgent as unions, and even state governments, try to circumvent the Janus decision and restrict workers’ freedom to freely choose union membership. Waiting to consolidate and enforce a decision from the nation’s highest court can only harm workers and muddy state labor practice.
It's time for lawmakers to pass this nonpartisan and meaningful legislation.