Ben Straka serves as a policy analyst for the Freedom Foundation. His responsibilities include an array of policy research and reform efforts, primarily centered around labor relations, education and government transparency within the states. In addition, he provides support for the Freedom Foundation’s Outreach program and works closely with the rest of the team to hold local governments and public-sector unions accountable to state residents.
Ben joined the Freedom Foundation in May 2016. He is a native of Eugene, Ore., and a graduate of Corban University, where he studied political science and business.
For all their claims of being worker-led, democratically run organizations, government unions in states like Pennsylvania seldom operate with the same level of accountability as do our elected officials.
Emails obtained by the Freedom Foundation from the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) indicate the state’s total count of COVID-19 deaths is overstated in more ways than one.
In its newly released strategic plan and budget proposal, the National Education Association (NEA) predicts it will lose roughly 128,000 members over the next two years.
Government unions’ refusal to accept a furlough plan in Cuyahoga County has led to several county employees losing their jobs, and, on a larger scale, highlighted the unfortunate reality often confronted by those bound by the inflexible grip of organized labor.
During the past week alone, Freedom Foundation outreach efforts saw dozens of Ohio’s public employees join the growing ranks of those who have decided to exercise their First Amendment right to opt out of union membership and dues.
An alleged PAC appears to have pressed pause on its campaign spending after a recent Freedom Foundation complaint filed with the Oregon Secretary of State exposed the group’s violations of state election laws.
As the U.S. Supreme Court rightfully acknowledged in its landmark ruling in Janus v. AFSCME (2018), an individual’s constitutional right to choose whether to associate with a labor union is an integral component of his or her freedom of speech in the workplace.
Apparently, that moral dilemma wasn’t shared by leaders of the Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) who, while attending the national union’s representative assembly last year in Texas, spent $7,729 of their members’ dues money on Houston Astros’ tickets and another $4,071 on what were presumably in-game expenses.
A complaint filed by the Freedom Foundation last week with the Oregon Secretary State’s Election Division alleges a union-backed political group committed what could amount to the costliest violations of campaign finance law in state history.
With workers across the country forced to tighten their pocketbooks to survive the coronavirus pandemic, the leaders of a local Teamsters union at Penn State University are promoting a uniquely unethical way to keep lining their own.