Today the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform launched a new website: ProtectingOurWorkers.com. This will allow the committee to listen “directly to rank-and-file union workers to deliver accountability for forced political contributions.” It will also be used to hold the government and union leaders who use someone’s hard earned money to fund political activity they do not support.
Sally Coomer from SEIU, Terry Bowman from UAW, and Claire Waites from NEA testified their rights were violated when their union leaders used their dues for political activity they did not support. Chairman Darrell Issa sent out six letters to union leaders and government agencies based on this testimony. The letters went to National Education Association, Alabama Education Association, Service Employees International Union, United Auto Workers, Federal Election Commission, and National Labor Relations Board. Chairman Issa issued the following statement:
Every worker should have the choice to decide whether their money is taken from their paychecks and used to fund political activity. At ProtectingOurWorkers.com, we’re listening to the hard-working rank-and-file union members speaking out about how forced political contributions violate their fundamental rights, and holding union leaders and government accountable to taxpayers.
The website provides union workers with a handy wallet-sized outline of a union worker’s constitutionally protected rights. Many union workers are not aware of these rights. You can easily print out this outline, carry it around, and show it to fellow union workers. It’s essential to be aware of your rights.
The committee has made the six letters accessible, along with videos of the testimony. A union worker can easily tell the committee if they’ve been forced to donate money to partisan union politics they oppose. More importantly, the committee will listen. No one should be taken advantage of. In a time of cutting back, every single paycheck is important. As the website states, $1 in taxes is just as precious as $1 in union fees.
You can also follow Chairman Issa and the Oversight committee on Twitter, @darrellissa and @GOPOversight.