The Janus-faced war on unions

Plaintiff Mark Janus

Plaintiff Mark Janus (Image via YouTube)

An opinion article recently appeared in the NY Daily News, discussing the on-going war labor unions have been facing against the rich and powerful. Whether it be wages, pensions, or benefits, one way or another big business owners have always tried to work around obligations to their working employees. Unfortunately, in today’s modern age this is no different.

Richard Trumka, President of the AFL-CIO and author of the article, writes that in an effort to put a friendly face to mask their ugly intentions, corporate interests cast Mark Janus, a seemingly average guy who states he “just doesn’t want to pay agency fees to his union.” Mark Janus is currently a plaintiff in the U.S. Supreme Court case, Janus v. AFSCME.

However, Janus–now the face for corporations in this issue–seems to not even agree with the corporate interests backing him, telling a crowd “collective bargaining is beneficial to people and workers,” and later admitting to reporters that he “joined the case because he didn’t want his union fees to be spent supporting Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.” This honesty shows that Mark Janus is misinformed. Janus has enjoyed benefits from collective bargaining, and his fees cover the cost for his union to negotiate better pay and benefits for him and his co-workers. Furthermore, President Trumka reiterates that under law not one cent of Janus’s money can be used to support a candidate’s political campaign – period. Employees has been able to opt out of such spending for decades.

Trumka writes,

“The corporate interests behind this case know a decision in their favor will hurt all working people, including Janus. And that’s exactly what they want.

They know that workers are strongest when we stand and fight together for our economic future. Their goal is to break that bond and leave us with a weaker voice on the job.”

To read the full article on the NY Daily News, click here.