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With Appellate Order, AFSCME Strike Decision Likely Delayed For Months

AFSCME picket
Amanda Vinicky
NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS
Last November, members of AFSCME picketed outside a state building in Springfield.

A court order revealed late last week makes it much less likely state employees will go on strike anytime soon.

With Gov. Bruce Rauner insisting his administration is at impasse with the AFSCME union, he wants to impose a contract on state employees. Among other things, that would mean a wage freeze and higher health insurance premiums.

But a Springfield-based Appellate Court has put all that on hold while Rauner and AFSCME fight over whether they’re really at impasse.

With Rauner unable to impose his terms, AFSCME has no legal authority to strike.

This will remain the status quo for some time: after the Appellate Court decides the case, whichever side loses is likely to appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court.

All of which means it’ll likely be months and months before AFSCME can even consider going out on strike.

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.
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