CHARLESTON, WV (NEWS RELEASE) — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey felt optimistic Tuesday following arguments to uphold the state’s right-to-work law, believing his office put forth a strong argument that will be ultimately vindicated at the end of litigation.
The Attorney General’s Office argued Tuesday that delay in implementing the right-to-work law has caused damage to the state. It also has created confusion among employees, unions and employers who lack guidance about how to lawfully negotiate collective bargaining agreements.
“Today my office vigorously defended the Workplace Freedom Act,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “We believe this is plainly constitutional legislation. Courts have repeatedly upheld similar laws, and we remain hopeful the court will agree with our arguments.”
The state Legislature passed the Workplace Freedom Act in February 2016. It allowed West Virginia to become the 26th right-to-work state in July 2016.
The U.S. Supreme Court and other courts have repeatedly rejected legal arguments similar to those blocking West Virginia’s law, which itself stands as the only such right-to-work measure presently enjoined in the nation.
The Attorney General argues that unions voluntarily decide whether to represent nonmembers. That choice comes with both costs and benefits that unions must weigh when deciding how they want to organize.