SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Five California educators on Monday filed a lawsuit seeking to stop the state’s top teachers union from collecting dues through mandatory paycheck deductions, the latest in a series of similar legal challenges filed across the country.
The lawsuit challenging the California Teachers Association’s mandatory collection of dues follows a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on June 27 barring the practice in the public sector.
“These dues are a negative financial impact to a lot of teachers who live in the Bay Area where there is a high cost of living,” said Bethany Mendez, one of the plaintiffs and a special education teacher at the Fremont Unified School District. Mendez said she pays $1,500 per year in union dues.
About 70 percent of the nation’s 3.8 million public school teachers belong to a union, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Teacher unions across the country have been bracing for litigation since the high court ruled 5-4 that requiring dues payments forces public sector workers to endorse political messages that they may be counter to their beliefs.