In Amicus Brief, The Buckeye Institute Once Again Calls on U.S. Supreme Court to Protect First Amendment Rights of Government Contractors

Jul 16, 2019

Columbus, OH – After filing the first post-Janus First Amendment labor law challenge in the United States Supreme Court, The Buckeye Institute filed an amicus brief in support of a related challenge, Miller v. Inslee, that calls on the U.S. Supreme Court to recognize that laws forcing recipients of government benefits to accept union representation are unconstitutional. As it did in its brief in Bierman v. Dayton, Buckeye argues that the lower courts have improperly exempted such “exclusive representation” schemes from scrutiny under the First Amendment.

“In its Janus ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court raised serious questions about the constitutionality of forced exclusive representation, and in three legal cases, The Buckeye Institute has outlined why it is unconstitutional to force public employees to be represented by unions that advocate against their interests,” said Robert Alt, president and chief executive officer of The Buckeye Institute. “Like Buckeye’s clients, Katherine Miller—a Washington state childcare provider—should not be forced to speak through a government union with which she disagrees.”

The Miller case, brought by National Right to Work Foundation, raises similar claims to Buckeye’s cases—Uradnik v. Inter Faculty Organization, Reisman v. Associated Faculties of the University of Maine, and Thompson v. Marietta Education Association—and challenges state laws which force individuals, in this case state childcare providers, to allow a government-designated union to speak for them.

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UPDATE: October 7, 2019, cert was denied by the Supreme Court of the United States.