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“Every Voice Counts”
Interview Script

Our goal is to interview every member because we
want to know what matters most to you. We also
need to share important information about a Supreme
Court case that could impact public employees, and
warn you about an anti-union organization called the
Freedom Foundation.

Talking Points

By July 2016, WA could become a “unionhostile” state (aka right-to-work) for public
employees. Meaning anyone currently in
a union could opt-out of paying dues and
paying any “fair share” fees, but still gets
representation and services of their union.

Wisconsin is a good example of what
happened to union members when their
rules changed:
1. Healthcare premiums increased by
$400/month (up to 12.2%)

Goal: Explain our goal and the importance of this campaign.

2. Retirement age increased & employee
contributions to pension increased by
over 12%


3. Public jobs got outsourced to the private
sector with low pay and poor quality of

What are you most concerned about now?
Goal: Listen to what currently matter most to them at their
workplace. (solicit feedback, listen and take notes)

4. Members abandoned their union
membership, resulting in less leverage
and less ability to stop management
from cutting pay, eliminating benefits
and outsourcing jobs.

Have you heard about the Friedrichs case? This is
a case that could weaken our ability to maintain a
strong union and expose us to attacks from antiunion groups such as the Freedom Foundation.

We have a plan to win. These interviews
are the first step. Every voice counts and
we want to connect with every member.
Every member needs to know what we’ve
won through our union and why it is
critical to maintain membership. We must
listen to each other and keep making

We must warn every member about the
propaganda campaign from the Freedom
Foundation. Their message is simple, “Opt
out. Save Money. Lose nothing.” This is a
lie. If we abandon our membership, we give
up our power and we could lose everything.

People power. Our strength is our ability
to work collectively. No matter how much
wealthy special interest groups and
corporations try to manipulate the rules
in favor of their agenda, we must stick
together. If we stay strong and commit to
each other and our union, we can continue
pushing to protect our jobs and improve
our future.

Goal: Educate about the Friedrichs case and the incoming “opt-out”
attack we can expect from the FF and what we could lose.

Will you commit to maintain your union membership
so we can protect our future?
Goal: Ask for their commitment to stick with the union and sign a
committment card.

How would you like to be engaged with our union?
Goal: Learn how they would like to be more involved with our union.

Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Friedrichs case?
Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association is a lawsuit before the U.S. Supreme Court that could eliminate union security
clauses and fair share requirements for all public employees. We expect a decision near the end of June 2016.
What is this case really about?
This case is really about wealthy special interest & anti-union groups working through the court system to make it harder for
teachers, police officers and other public service employees to come together through a union to have a voice on the job to
sustain our families and get ahead.
What are fair share requirements and union security clauses?
Our union is required by law to negotiate for everyone in a workplace. Employees who don’t want to belong to our union
contribute to the cost of that representation through fair share requirements, instead of dues. It’s only fair that all workers help
pay for the cost of securing those benefits and protections. Union-friendly states, like Washington, allow “fair share” requirements
while union-hostile states (a.k.a., right-to-work [for less] states), like Idaho and Wisconsin, have eliminated them.
Union security clauses, also known as a “union shop” require employees covered by the contract to join the union, and pay dues
or fair share requirements. Members decide if they want to have a union shop and vote to accept this as part of their contract.
Union shops have better contracts and working conditions because everyone benefitting is also contributing.
What’s at stake for public sector union members in Washington?
If the Supreme Court eliminates union-security clauses and fair share fees, public sector union members lose their ability
to have everyone pay their fair share. Employees could abandon their membership and not pay a dime towards the work of
representation, but still get the benefits and improvements that others build and maintain. Members’ ability to improve their own
contracts, wages, and benefits will be greatly diminished.
Who’s behind Freidrichs?
This case is being pushed by the Center for Individual Rights, an anti-union organization. The Freedom Foundation in WA State
pushes a similar agenda, funded by wealthy special interest groups and anti-union donors. The mission of these organizations is
to destroy unions by taking away our funding.
Why are wealthy special interest groups, like the Freedom Foundation, attacking unions this way?
Unions are one of the last checks on corporate power. They don’t like what we stand for and push to improve: Strong and healthy
communities, wages to support ourselves and our families, secure retirement, good benefits and respect at work. All of their
shenanigans are for one purpose—to bleed us of resources and distract us from our work, our victories, and our ability to raise
standards for working people everywhere.
Why does this really matter?
In many cases, these rules result in fewer members, meaning less union power to protect and improve wages, benefits and living
standards. We’ve worked hard to make improvements to our jobs through our ability to collectively bargain and raise standards.
As union members we help create a more equitable economy. We support our communities and strive to give people more
opportunity to participate in their communities. Our values are at stake. We must work together and stay committed to each
other to protect them.
How do we fight back?
By committing to each other to build and maintain a strong union we can keep winning better wages and working conditions.
Members must talk to their co-workers about what we’ve accomplished through a strong union: raising wages, pushing to
build and maintain good benefits, and gaining improvements to our jobs. Members must also be warned to not be fooled into
abandoning their union membership by groups like the Freedom Foundation, whose goal is to weaken and dismantle public
unions. If we stick together we win.

Additional resources:


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