HARRISBURG – In response to the landmark Janus v. AFSCME U.S. Supreme Court decision in 2018, Senator Scott Martin (R-13) introduced legislation today to ensure public sector employees understand all of their rights pertaining to union membership and fees.
Pennsylvania law currently allows some public sector unions to collect a so-called “fair share fee” from employees even if they choose to decline union membership. The Janus decision determined that requiring a non-consenting employee to pay a fair share fee violates the First Amendment rights of workers.
Senate Bill 371 would repeal statutes that allow unions to collect fair share fees in Pennsylvania in order to bring state law into compliance with the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Janus.
“In current practice, money is deducted from the paychecks of many public sector employees to support a union that may or may not reflect the political views of all of its members,” Martin said. “The Supreme Court rightfully ruled that employees should not be forced to provide financial support to a political organization that does not support their beliefs.”
The legislation would also ensure all public sector employees understand their right to decline union membership. Public sector employers would be required to regularly notify employees in writing that union membership is voluntary, consensual, and not a condition of employment.
“Nothing in this bill adversely affects a union’s right to organize, to bargain, or to advocate, nor does it affect the rights of employees who wish to participate in and contribute to their union voluntarily,” Martin said. “It only ensures that employees understand their rights, and that the financial support provided to unions is based on choice — not collected by force.”
CONTACT: Terry Trego (717) 787-6535