In March, your Freedom Foundation filed an appeal petition to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) in a first-of-its-kind case to undo the damage from a deceptive ballot measure that effectively prevents the release of certain state employees’ contact information to anyone but the government union.
Initiative 1501, passed in Washington State in November 2016, was billed as a way of protecting senior citizens and other vulnerable individuals from identity theft. In reality, the ballot measure was a scheme pushed by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) as a way of preventing individual caregivers, like Brad Boardman and the Freedom Foundation from obtaining in-home caregivers’ contact information to inform them of their right not to support the union with their state-subsidized paychecks.
Recognizing the implications on free speech and freedom of association if a political entity could maintain such discriminatory power over the release of information, Boardman v. Inslee was supported by an almost unheard of 13 amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) briefs authored by an impressive group of individuals and organizations.
If SCOTUS agrees to hear the appeal, it could put an end to similar tactics unions employ across the country to prevent the release of their public employee membership lists to fulfill public records requests.
The list of organizations submitting or joining briefs agreeing with the Freedom Foundation and its plaintiffs includes:
- Allied Daily Newspapers (Representing Seattle Times, Spokesman Review, Tacoma News Tribune and 23 other newspapers in Washington state)
- National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation;
- Landmark Legal Foundation;
- Pacific Legal Foundation and Pelican Institute;
- Buckeye Institute;
- Center for the American Experiment;
- Mackinac Center;
- Goldwater Institute and Illinois Policy Institute;
- Alliance Defending Freedom on behalf of Bronx Household of Faith;
- Fairness Center;
- Protect the First;
- Citizen Action Defense Fund (Washington state); and,
- The attorneys general of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, West Virginia and Utah.
The Freedom Foundation is honored to have the support of such well-known and renowned First Amendment advocates that fight on behalf of everyday Americans like our plaintiffs in Boardman. We are incredibly grateful and thankful.
Boardman v. Inslee is the Freedom Foundation’s second appeal to the Supreme Court this year.