Union officials refuse to refund money they took from employees’ pay for healthcare benefits the employees never received
Phoenix, AZ (December 21, 2020) – Phoenix-area Cemex Transport employee Joseph Conway has filed charges against Teamsters Local 104 union. He asserts that union officials refuse to return money that was deducted from his and his coworkers’ paychecks for healthcare benefits they never received. His charges were filed at National Labor Relations Board Region 28 in Phoenix with free legal aid from the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation.
According to Conway’s charge, Teamsters union officials, who maintained monopoly bargaining power over his workplace until October of this year, took money from the pay of every bargaining unit employee in Conway’s workplace to go towards what the union bosses claimed was a union-sponsored healthcare plan.
The charge alleges that Conway and at least four of his other coworkers never received the promised benefits. Facing significant opposition from workers opposed to their so-called “representation,” in October union officials disclaimed interest in being the monopoly representatives at Conway’s workplace, but never gave back the money that was deducted from Conway and his coworkers’ paychecks.
After the union disclaimed interest, the charge notes, Conway called a Teamsters Local 104 union official to ask about getting a refund of the money taken from his pay. The union agent then probed Conway on whether he had signed a petition that had been circulated for a vote to remove the union. When Conway responded in the affirmative, the agent said he would not get a refund. The charge reports that when other employees phoned with similar inquiries, the union official hung up on them.
Conway’s Foundation-backed charge argues that the Teamsters bosses’ refusal to return the money deducted from his and other employees’ paychecks violates their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The Act forbids union officials from discriminatorily denying promised benefits to employees who exercise their right to attempt to decertify a union they oppose.
“Teamsters bosses are violating the rights of Conway and his coworkers, who in addition to never receiving promised healthcare benefits are now being robbed blind because they exercised their right to seek a vote to remove the union,” observed National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix. “Foundation staff attorneys will fight for Conway and his coworkers until their rights are vindicated and their hard-earned money is returned.”
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in more than 250 cases nationwide per year.