Law Professor and Students’ Work on U.S. Supreme Court Case Pays Off

Bruce Cameron, Reed Larson Professor of Labor Law and National Right to Work Foundation (NRTW) staff member (pictured), and three Regent Law students participated in Harris v. Quinn, a case argued before the Supreme Court of the United States in January 2014. This summer, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of NRTW; the Foundation's attorneys represented Pamela Harris.

Harris v. Quinn investigates whether state-paid home healthcare employees like Harris, who cares for her disabled son, should pay compulsory union dues. Home healthcare employees are friends and relatives of the sick and disabled who choose to provide home care rather than institutionalize their loved ones. Due to declining membership, union leaders asked states that created home care programs to recognize these workers as state employees for purposes of collective bargaining.

In June 2014, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Harris and several other employees represented by NRTW staff attorneys, stating that it is unconstitutional that union dues be mandatory.

Professor Cameron partnered with William Messenger, an NRTW attorney who represented several home healthcare employees. Cameron edited a brief, suggested case strategy, and worked with Regent Law students who did research on issues related to Harris v. Quinn.

Three Regent Law students also worked on the case. Megan (Herald) Donley ’12 assisted both Messenger and Professor Cameron, and wrote an article for Regent University Law Review on the case. Jennifer Brown ’14 and Zachary Hoffman ’13 worked on research for Harris v. Quinn when it went before the Supreme Court.

“I continue to work towards the goal of eliminating compulsory union fees, and Regent students continue to help me,” states Professor Cameron. “We are changing the balance of political power in the United States to better reflect the free choice of citizens.”

Read more about Regent Law’s involvement with Supreme Court cases.

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