Kentucky-based UPS employee William Anderson appealed his case against Teamsters Local 215 union bosses to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel in Washington, DC on January 22, 2020. Anderson received free legal aid from National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation staff attorneys. Anderson charged Teamsters officials with illegally denying requests he made to stop seizing dues from his paycheck while there was no active contract in place between the Teamsters union and the UPS. Regardless, the union continued seizing dues from his paycheck after receiving those requests. Per Kentucky’s Right to Work law, Anderson cannot be forced to pay dues to maintain his job.
According to Anderson’s appeal, the UPC employee claimed that he sent a letter to Teamsters bosses on March 25, 2019. In his letter, Anderson signaled his resignation from the union and called for union dues to no longer be collected from his paycheck. The following week, Teamsters officials acknowledged his resignation. However, they claimed that his dues checkoff revocation was submitted in an untimely manner. Anderson tried to stop the union from collecting dues on April 8, 2019, but union agents denied this revocation as well, claiming that his revocation had to be filed within a 15-day “window period” in February to have any validity.
As Anderson was trying to stop more dues from being seized from his paycheck, his appeal noted, Teamsters officials and UPS had not yet approved a new monopoly bargaining contract. Even though Teamsters bosses failed to inform him of his right to revoke his dues checkoff at will while no contract was enforced, Anderson found out about his rights on his own and sent union officials letters on April 17 and May 8, 2019, demanding that he provide a copy of the new monopoly bargaining contract. Anderson “believed this new contract was not ratified at the time he sent his revocation letters” and believed that his two attempts to stop dues should have been honored.
In response, Anderson’s appeal notes, Teamsters bosses sent him on May 21, 2019, a copy of an “extension agreement dated June 21, 2018 that indefinitely extended the prior contract” past its expiration date, ostensibly in an attempt to show Anderson that there was never a contract hiatus in which he could have stopped dues deductions. Anderson’s appeal argues that, because federal law forbids dues checkoffs which are “irrevocable…beyond the termination date of the applicable” monopoly bargaining contract, Teamsters officials infringed on his rights by rejecting his attempts to stop paying dues.
With free legal counsel from the Foundation, Anderson filed federal charges at NLRB Region 10 against Teamsters bosses back in September 2019. Anderson asserted that the Teamsters had violated his rights by not letting him know about the times he could reject his dues checkoff, limiting to an illegal “window period” the time in which he could halt dues deductions, and “rejecting his revocation during a contract hiatus.” Region 10 rejected Anderson’s argument that Teamsters bosses had rejected his revocation while no contract was active, spurring him to appeal his case to the NLRB General Counsel in Washington, DC.
“Teamsters bosses, in this case and many others, have given the very workers they claim to represent misinformation about their right to cut off union dues deductions and imposed arbitrary restrictions on the exercise of that right simply to keep dues money flowing into their coffers,” commented National Right to Work President Mark Mix. “We urge the General Counsel to quickly prosecute Teamsters officials for illegally blocking Mr. Anderson’s attempt to exercise his right to stop funding union activities.”