Unions challenge West Virginia payroll deductions act

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A dozen labor groups in West Virginia have filed a lawsuit challenging a new law that prohibits union dues or fees from being withheld from state employee paychecks.

The lawsuit was filed Thursday in Kanawha County Circuit Court. The law bans the deductions unless a worker provides written consent.

The lawsuit claims the law violates equal protection and contracts clauses of the state Constitution as well as free speech protections.

Unions representing teachers, firefighters, police, coal miners and corrections officers are among those joining the lawsuit. Gov. Jim Justice, who signed the measure into law, vetoed a similar bill in 2017.

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