A court has ruled collections of dues from workers at four California farming operations must be used to pay off damages relating to the United Farmworkers (UFW) union’s treatment of its own organizers, the Los Angeles Times has reported.
The story reported Monterey Superior Court Judge Thomas W. Wills last week ordered that union payments from workers at Dole, D’Arrigo Brothers, Scheid Vineyards and Balletto Ranch Inc would need to be used by the UFW for the back pay of wages to 24 of its organizers.
The judgment relates to a decision made in March by the same judge, who ruled the UFW organizers were owed four years’ worth of overtime and meal breaks.
The LA Times reported the judgment was worth US$1.2 million but could be inflated to more than US$2 million when including legal costs, or the equivalent of almost half the dues collected from UFW members across the state according to U.S. Department of Labor records.
UFW spokesman Armando Elenes told the publication the union would appeal the order.