The Friedrichs case: What you need to know

In the U.S. Supreme Court case, Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, a group of educators backed by a right-wing pressure group filed a lawsuit that has made its way to the highest court in America. It asks the court to decide whether public sector unions may continue to charge nonmembers a fee equal to the cost of representing them to their employer (a fee called “agency fee” or “fair share”). In states where there is no fair share, the union must sign up everyone as a member—not merely a fair share payer—to keep the union strong. If the court rules against us, then the AFT’s work to support working families and reclaim the promise of public services will become harder. But if we are prepared, our efforts will become stronger.

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