It’s bad enough when public-sector unions pick the pockets of their own members; it’s even worse when they victimize workers they don’t even pretend to represent.
Freedom Foundation attorneys recently recovered $2,230 on behalf of two Oregon workers. The money was taken from their paychecks, without authorization, by Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 503.
The punchline is that when the money taken, the workers — John Cummings and Deanna Salvo — weren’t members of any collective bargaining unit represented by SEIU.
Instead, they were represented by a different union entirely.
Salvo and Cummings, as a result of work promotions, changed jobs — and bargaining units. In their previous positions, they were represented by SEIU 503. But after their promotion they became members the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Council (AFSCME) 75.
After changing bargaining units, Salvo and Cummings believed SEIU would never deduct another penny from their paychecks.
They were wrong.
For several years, SEIU continued to deduct $10 a month from each worker, attributing the fee to an “associate membership.”
Even though Salvo and Cummings never authorized any with SEIU.
When they contacted the union to complain, they were given conflicting explanations. In Salvo’s case, an SEIU 503 official insisted she had authorized an associate membership, while Cummings was told he had been given a membership “as a courtesy.”
To date, SEIU still has not produced copies of either worker’s authorization.
Fed up with the union’s antics, Salvo and Cummings contacted the Freedom Foundation for help. The organization’s attorneys sent a demand letter to SEIU and Salvo and Cummings are now free.
They no longer pay money to either SEIU — or AFSCME.
Thanks to our generous donors across the country, the Freedom Foundation was able to provide this service free of charge, as it has always done, for public employees looking to stand up for their rights and opt-out of union membership.
We love what we do, and we do it for free. Some might even call that a courtesy.
Watch Salvo and Cummings tell their story: