Fort Campbell worker sues union over religious beliefs

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A hospital warden at the Fort Campbell Army station has filed a complaint against her union, arguing that she shouldn’t have to pay dues because of her religious beliefs.

The lawsuit was filed by Dorothy Frame, who works at the Blanchfield Army Community Hospital in Fort Campbell on the Kentucky-Tennessee border as an employee of J&J Worldwide, a service company. The company has a contract with the International Union of Workers, according to the federal lawsuit.

Frame argued in Tuesday’s Nashville lawsuit that his religious beliefs were being violated because of “his opposition to the union’s position on abortion,” according to a press release from the law firm representing Frame.

“She believes joining or financially supporting unions would make her complicit in this sin, because she believes unions support and promote abortion,” said the statement from the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, which combats the efforts. unionization.

The legal group has been implicated in a 2018 Supreme Court ruling that federal workers cannot be forced to pay dues to a union that represents them in collective bargaining.

Frame’s lawsuit accused the union of religious discrimination. She sent a letter to the union in 2019 informing it of its position, according to the lawsuit.

Frame does not currently pay union dues, according to the lawsuit. Those payments ceased in November 2019, but the two sides remained stuck in a dispute.

Lawyers for the union argued that Frame had failed to demonstrate how the union supported abortion, according to the lawsuit. A union lawyer was not listed in federal court records on Friday.

Frame is asking the court to declare that she has a right to religious accommodation and that the union reimburse her for the dues she paid. She also seeks “damages for emotional pain, suffering and mental anguish”.

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