American Family News

OH Teachers’ Union Sued, Accused of Sneaky Tactics to Keep the Dues Coming

February 28, 2024

(American Family News)—Another legal fight over forced union dues is headed to court, this time involving a teachers’ union.

The newest federal lawsuit is in Ohio, where teacher’s aide Denise Cogar quit her union only to be informed four months later the union was taking dues from her paycheck.

The union is the Ohio Association of Public School Employees.

Cogar’s attorneys at Liberty Justice Center said she was informed she had not made her request during the union’s once-a-year “opt out window.”

“Denise waited until the end of August, sent a letter again to the union saying she no longer wanted to be in the union, and she wanted dues to be stopped,” says Liberty attorney Jeffrey M. Schwab.

“A couple weeks later,” he continues, “she received a response that said, ‘We’re sorry to see you go and, by the way, we can’t stop dues because you didn’t follow the proper procedure.'”

The union is part of American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, or AFSCME.

That powerful group famously lost a landmark 2018 U.S. Supreme Court ruling. That decision favored Mark Janus, a State of Illinois employee who contested his dues, as well as all public sector employees.

Jacob Huebert, the president of Liberty Justice Center, represented Janus in the U.S. Supreme Court case.

According to Schwab and Liberty Justice Center, Cogar contacted the union and found out her letter was received one day before the so-called opt out window.

“They waited to send the letter until a week after her window had closed,” Schwab says. “So she had no options to correct whatever technical mistake that she allegedly made and would have to pay the union another year.”

As a result, Liberty Justice Center believes Cogar was harmed twice.

“She should have been let out when they originally let her out,” the attorney argues. “They can’t rescind allowing her to be out of the union and stopping her dues and then, four months later, without her permission, start taking dues again.”