Union: Right-to-Work Law Like Slavery

An Indiana union has filed a lawsuit against Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels claiming that Indiana’s right-to-work law is akin to slavery, in violation of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution.


The union, The International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150, claims in the lawsuit filed on Wednesday that “compulsory service is the equivalent of involuntary servitude under the Thirteenth Amendment.”

The lawsuit argues that the “defendants have exacted compulsory service and/ or involuntary servitude from the Union through the combination of the passage of the Right to Work law and the existing federal requirement of the duty of fair representation” and that the union is “compelled to furnish services to all persons in bargaining units that it represents but it may not require payments for those services because of the Right to Work law.”

The union also claims the right-to-work law “requires dues-paying members to work alongside non-union personnel, and that is compulsory service within the meaning of the thirteenth amendment.”

The Thirteenth Amendment, passed after the Civil War to emancipate blacks, reads, “neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

Needless to say, the original intent of the Thirteenth Amendment was not to help union workers prevent non-union members from being able to work.


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