When news broke that the Supreme Court would hear Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, headlines instantly projected the worst, calling it “The Supreme Court Case That Could Decimate American Public Sector Unionism,” “An Existential Threat,” and even “The End of Public-Employee Unions?”
Hyperbole aside, a decision that makes the whole public sector “right to work” could be devastating. But it won’t make unions powerless.
After all, public sector workers didn’t always have legal protection to unionize, bargain, or strike, much less enforce agency shop. Not too far back in history, they won those rights—by organizing without them…..