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Illinois Worker in Supreme Court Union Case Joins Think Tank

The Illinois worker behind the lawsuit that led to the U.S. Supreme Court decision that eliminated fees paid by nonmembers of public employee unions is joining the group that oversaw his case.

The Chicago Tribune reports that Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services employee Mark Janus is joining the Illinois Policy Institute and its Liberty Justice Center on Aug. 1 as a "senior fellow."

"Every day, their staff is working to turn around the state of Illinois, and I am grateful for the opportunity to spend the remainder of my career doing something I believe in," said Janus. "I look forward to helping make a difference for workers in the state and across the U.S."

Janus argued against a 41-year-old ruling that had allowed states to require public employees to pay some fees to unions that represent them, even if the workers chose not to join. He said unions are political and employees shouldn't be forced to pay.

The Supreme Court overturned the decision in June.

Government employees in Illinois and nearly two dozen other states can now choose not to pay for union efforts to bargain over wages, pensions, health care benefits and other services. The decision was a setback for organized labor nationwide, as well as a victory for Republican Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner.

Janus will ensure workers understand their rights and what the win means as he tours the U.S., said Policy Institute CEO John Tillman.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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