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Unions Want Freedom of Association — But Only for Themselves


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Unions Want Freedom of Association — But Only for Themselves

2 HOURS AGO Gary Galles

When unions are in their justifying-their-existence mode, they quickly turn to false claims, such as asserting that higher union wages benefit other workers. In fact, unions actually actually reduce the availability of union jobs, and force workers elsewhere, increasing labor supply and decreasing wages for those jobs. At a more basic level, though, they justify themselves as exemplars of the right of freedom of association, so that anything which restricts them violates freedom of association.

The union version of freedom of association is that workers are free to associate with them, under unique government-granted privileges, including monopoly representation of all workers based on a one-time election. As Brenda Smith of the AFT put it, “Exclusivity for a union with majority support…is democracy…It allows employees to select their representative freely, without coercion from the employer. It allows them to amplify their voice through collective action under our constitutionally protected right to freedom of association.” But such union freedom of association rights are sharply inconsistent with universal rights to freedom of association. :snip: 

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