Labor unions take forced fees from 550,000 nonmembers

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To keep their jobs, 554,799 American workers were forced last year to pay union agency fees.

In the 25 states without right-to-work laws, unions can take mandatory “fair share” or “agency” fees from workers who decline union membership. Those fees often amount to hundreds of dollars per year.

Unions can’t spend agency fees directly on politics, but taking fees from nonmembers frees unions to spend more from members’ dues on political activism for “progressive,” big-government policies.

Agency fees inflate union membership, as well — workers who want to opt out must consider they’ll have to pay the union — regardless of whether they join.

Unions shouldn’t be allowed take fees from nonmembers, Matt Patterson, director of the Center for Worker Freedom at Americans for Tax Reform, said in an email to Watchdog.

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