The Fairness Center represents Glen Wilkofsky, a 20-year veteran of the Allentown Symphony Orchestra, who wants to be able to hold his seat and perform as principal timpanist without having to be part of the union that represents the orchestral musicians.
After Mr. Wilkofsky decided he no longer wanted to be a member of the union or to pay it money, the union suspended him—and the orchestra confirmed that his job was on the line if he didn’t get back in good standing with the union. The orchestra and the union do not recognize that Mr. Wilkofsky has rights under the Supreme Court’s 2018 decision in Janus v. AFSCME, which held that public employees cannot be forced to support a union against their will. Even though the union is certified under Pennsylvania’s Public Employe Relations Act, it still claims that Mr. Wilkofsky can be forced to support the union. Because he opposes being forced to associate with the union or provide it financial support, Mr. Wilkofsky has filed a federal lawsuit to protect his First Amendment rights.
Glen Wilkofsky v. American Federation of Musicians, Local 45; Allentown Symphony Association Inc
This case was filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.