In his first big move as New Jersey’s new Attorney General Gurbir Grewal says he will sign on to an amicus brief in a U.S. Supreme Court case that strengthens the position of labor unions.
The case is Janus v. AFSCME, filed by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, which seeks to overturn another Supreme Court case, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education. In the Abood case, the top court found that public unions may require all workers to pay a fair share of union dues. The Janus case, according to state officials, could permit some workers to opt out – something Gov. Phil Murphy’ administration believes would weaken collective bargaining by labor unions.
“The Abood case defers to state judgement on how labor practices should be regulated,” Grewal said. “Today, my office takes the first step toward protecting the rights of states and other employers.”
During his campaign for governor, Murphy pledged to support stronger labor unions.
“Labor is the backbone of New Jersey’s economy; union members make up over 16 percent of our wage and salary workers,” said Murphy. “Supporting strong unions is a critical part of making New Jersey’s economy work for everyone. By supporting this brief, Attorney General Grewal is sending a message to those attempting to undermine our labor force that New Jersey and this administration will not stand for policies that weaken unions and labor organizations.”