CPC’s letter of support for AB 1484

By Lance Christensen
May 6, 2021

RE: AB 1484 – SUPPORT 

Dear Assemblymember Kiley:

The California Policy Center is pleased to support Assembly Bill 1484 to bring California law into compliance with a recent decision by the Supreme Court of the United States and ensure public school employees are freely able to consent or decline union membership.

On June 27, 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled in Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Mun. Employees, Council 31 (2018) that the collection of agency fees from public employees was an unconstitutional violation of their rights under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution and should cease immediately. They also held that employers need affirmative consent to collect dues from union members and further clarified the constitutional rights of public employees, including teachers. Indeed, “The First Amendment (of the United States Constitution) is violated when money is taken from nonconsenting employees for a public-sector union; employees must choose to support the union before anything is taken from them.”

Assembly Bill 1484 prohibits public school employers from deducting membership dues from payroll for any bargaining unit without permission of each employee, each calendar year through an explicit opt-in process. It would ensure that teacher paying union dues has consented to have them deducted from their paycheck. As such, the state legislature should take the opportunity to clean up the Government Code so there is no confusion about the law as it pertains to public school employees and teachers in the course of the hiring process and their employment. Public school employees who want to join the union would continue to be able to do so as they wish.

Sincerely,

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Lance Christensen

Chief Operations Officer

California Policy Center

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