The Oregon chapter of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) has experienced monumental membership and financial losses in just the first year after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Janus v. AFSCME, which affirmed the right of public employees to stop paying union dues.
The release this month of AFT’s most recent LM-2 report continues an alarming trend for the leaders of Oregon’s public employee unions. The Department of Labor filling shows that just in the past year, AFT has lost 4,133 members and agency fee-payers.
This revelation comes on the heels of the release of AFT National’s annual report showing a 4 percent decline in membership across the country.
The stark difference between the national decline compared to the decline in Oregon’s chapter is almost entirely attributable to the work of the Freedom Foundation.
AFT members in Oregon have been inundated with door-to-door visits, direct mail, email, texts, billboards and even radio and tv ads — all driving home the message of their newly affirmed rights to leave their union.
Oregon’s AFT joins the ranks with the Oregon School Employees Association (OSEA), who experienced a 36 percent decline in membership over the past year.
When public employees are informed of their rights to leave their union, separate themselves from extremist partisan politics, and keep hundreds of dollars a year in their pocket, they can’t opt out fast enough.