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Read the Supreme Court opinion in Janus v AFSCME

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that government workers can’t be forced to contribute to labor unions that represent them in collective bargaining, dealing a serious financial blow to organized labor.

The justices are scrapping a 41-year-old decision that had allowed states to require that public employees pay some fees to unions that represent them, even if the workers choose not to join.

The 5-4 decision fulfills a longtime wish of conservatives to get rid of the so-called fair share fees that non-members pay to unions in roughly two dozen states. The court ruled that the laws violate the First Amendment by compelling workers to support unions they may disagree with.

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• In a blow to unions, government workers no longer have to pay ‘fair share’ fees

• Gov. Bruce Rauner in Washington awaiting Janus decision

Who is Mark Janus?

• Why our nation is watching Illinois case Janus v. AFSCME

• Unions, anticipating Janus case Supreme Court loss, jump-start recruiting drives

• Janus v. AFSCME: Rauner, Lisa Madigan and the Illinois case at the Supreme Court

• Unions rally in Loop over ‘fair share’ case being heard before Supreme Court

• Gorsuch deciding vote in key labor union funding case with Illinois roots

• Trump administration takes Rauner’s side in ‘fair share’ case

• Supreme Court to hear challenge to unions

• Rauner happy with court’s fair-share review; AFSCME critical

Judge allows union-fee suit to proceed — without Rauner

• 3 state employees want to join Rauner lawsuit over ‘fair share’ union fees

OPINION

• Collective action is unions’ last defense – and high court on verge of ending it

Janus case is part of continuing attack on workers

• Union ‘fair share’ fees protect all workers without infringing on free speech