A Very Bad Day for Unionized Texas Firefighters

Holy ****.  That is about all I can say about the opinion handed down by the Texas Supreme Court on Friday in City of Round Rock v. Rodriguez.  If you valued your union representation at investigative interviews, you can likely kiss it goodbye for the time being.

In a split decision, with Chief Justice Jefferson and Justices Hecht and Lehrmann dissenting, the Court held the following:

We hold that section 101.001 of the Labor Code does not confer on public-sector employees in Texas the right to union representation when an employee reasonably believes that an investigatory interview with the employer may result in disciplinary action.
Let that sink in a moment.  It doesn’t mean no union representative at a grievance hearing – that is still protected. But this means no union representative when you are interrogated regarding a potential issue that may lead to a grievance and disciplinary action, which the US Supreme Court has ruled is required for private-sector employees in the Weingarten case. This is a shockingly bad decision for Texas firefighters who are members of the IAFF.
The dissent was equally perplexed by the majority opinion.  If you are at all interested in the rights of public employees, I direct you to the two opinions:
edited to add:
And I also direct you to a much longer discussion of the matter by Curt Varone that hits the nail on the head much more thoroughly than I have here.

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