On May 6, 2020, Teamsters Local 328 union bosses approved a union contract which covers field staff on the campaign of prospective Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.
Union leaders and the Biden campaign rolled out a joint statement announcing this plan last week.
In response to this announcement, National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix made the following statement which informed Biden field organizers about their labor rights:
Given Teamsters union bosses’ notorious reputation it is critical that Biden campaign staffers, who have been unionized without even a secret ballot election, know that despite what Teamsters organizers or their employer might say, they cannot be required to join the Teamsters.
Biden campaign workers who work in Right to Work states should also know that they cannot be required to pay any dues or fees to the union as a condition of employment. Meanwhile, in states without Right to Work protections, while employees can be forced to pay some fees to keep their jobs, they have the right to cut off the portion of union fees used for politics and other activities not directly related to bargaining.
Further, campaign staffers should know that it is against the law for either the Teamsters or the Biden campaign to retaliate against any employee who exercises his or her right to refrain from union membership and cut off full union dues. Biden staffers also have the right to file a decertification petition to trigger a secret ballot vote to remove the Teamsters.
Over the years, countless workers across the country have successfully challenged Teamsters bosses’ coercive tactics with free legal aid from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys. Biden field organizers, like all workers, should know they can request free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation should they need help challenging union coercion.