Abood v. Detroit Board of Education

RESPONDENT: Detroit Board of Education
LOCATION: Skokie Village Hall

DOCKET NO.: 75-1153
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1975-1981)
LOWER COURT: State appellate court

CITATION: 431 US 209 (1977)
ARGUED: Nov 09, 1976
DECIDED: May 23, 1977

Sylvester Petro -
Theodore Sachs - for appellees

Facts of the case


Media for Abood v. Detroit Board of Education

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - November 09, 1976 in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - May 23, 1977 in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education

Warren E. Burger:

The judgment and opinion of the Court in 75-1153, Abood against the Detroit Board of Education will be announced by Mr. Justice Stewart.

Potter Stewart:

This case is here on direct appeal from the Court of Appeals of Michigan.

The State of Michigan has enacted legislation authorizing union representation of local governmental employees.

A union and a local government employer are specifically permitted to agree to an agency shop arrangement whereby every employee represented by a union even though not a union member must pay to the union as extension of employment a service fee to union duty.

The issue in this case whether this arrangement violates the constitutional rights of government employees who object to public sector unions as such or to various unions' activities finance by the compulsory service fees.

For the reasons set out at some length in the written opinion of the Court filed with the clerk this morning, we hold that a state law authorizing unionization and an agency shop arrangement for public sector employees in this case, Detroit school teachers is not constitutionally invalid for collective bargaining purposes.

But we further hold that under the First and Fourteenth Amendments, no such employee maybe required to give financial support to the furtherance of any idealogical cause with which he disagrees.

Accordingly, the judgment of the Court of Appeals of Michigan is vacated and the case is remanded to that court for further proceedings not inconsistent with this Court's opinion.

Mr. Justice Rehnquist and Mr. Justice Stevens while joining the opinion of the Court have each filed concurring opinions.

Mr. Justice Powell has filed an opinion concurring only in the Court's judgment.

The Chief Justice and Mr. Justice Blackmun have joined Mr. Justice Powell's separate opinion.

Warren E. Burger:

Thank you, Mr. Justice Stewart.