Teen Files Federal Charges Against UFCW

Christopher Ratana-Kelley, a 16-year-old grocery store courtesy clerk from California, has filed unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board against the UFCW. When he started his part-time job at the store, the union demanded that he pay union fees. He requested a breakdown of these fees, but the union allegedly refused to provide one as it is required to do.

[Due to the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Beck case,] employees can only be forced to pay union dues for certain union activity. Employees also have the right to have an independent third party audit the union expenditures and certify that the percentage of dues that nonmembers are forced to pay does not include political spending and other non-collective bargaining expenses.

Why wouldn’t the UFCW respect this teenager’s rights and offer a justification for the fees it charges workers? Does it have something to hide? Perhaps the huge union figured that Christopher is just a kid, who doesn’t know his rights or wouldn’t know how to pursue a case against the union. Unfortunately for the UFCW, Christopher sought the help of the National Right to Work Foundation, and now the union gets to explain to the NLRB its apparent disregard for the rule of law.


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