US Supreme Court Ruling in Janus v. AFSCME, Council 31

Arbitration Gavel Scales

What is the Janus decision?
On June 27, 2018, the US Supreme Court issued its decision in Janus v. AFSCME, Council 31.  The Court ruled that state and local laws authorizing union security provisions are unconstitutional.  Further, the Court's ruling prohibits public employers and unions from entering into agreements that require bargaining unit employees to pay union dues or an agency fee.   The decision can be found at the following link: Janus v. AFSCME, Council 31

What is a union security provision?
A union security provision is found in a collective bargaining agreement.  It is an agreement between the employer and union that requires all members of the bargaining unit to pay their fair share of the cost of collective bargaining.  Members do this either by joining the union and paying union dues or by paying an agency fee, which covers the costs related to collective bargaining and enforcement of the collective bargaining agreement. 

Do Washington’s collective bargaining laws authorize such union security provisions?
Yes, the state’s collective bargaining laws all currently authorize union security provisions and are impacted by the Janus decision.

Does the Janus decision impact unions’ obligations to represent all bargaining unit members?
The state’s collective bargaining laws require a bargaining representative certified by PERC or recognized by the public employer to represent all the public employees within the bargaining unit.  The Court’s decision does not change these laws. 

If I have questions about my union dues or agency fee payment, who should I contact?
Employees with questions about their union dues or agency fee payments should contact their union. 

See PERC’s website for questions about PERC’s other services.
Employees with questions about representation, unfair labor practices, or any of PERC’s services can visit or call PERC at 360.570.7300.

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