Washington, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-3 to strike down a decades-old California regulation that granted limited work site access to union organizers to ensure that farmworkers understood their collective bargaining rights and were empowered to exercise their right to come together in unions. The regulation was inspired by the ongoing efforts of farmworkers to exercise their rights despite being excluded from the National Labor Relations Act, the federal labor law governing private sector bargaining in the United States. The court ruled that granting access to union organizers violated the private-property rights of landowners. In response, Karla Walter, senior director of employment policy at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:
Today, the Supreme Court’s conservative majority overturned nearly a half-century of progress for California’s farmworkers, who have struggled to exercise their right to bargain for decent wages and to protect their health and safety. The court’s majority is once again rigging the system in favor of big corporations and against workers. Reaching farmworkers—the overwhelming majority of whom are Latinx and migrant workers—where they work is critical to protecting their rights and interests. These rules were meant to bring justice to farmworkers and stability in labor relations, and in no way interfere with private-property rights.
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