“Freedom” Foundation’s Frivolous Lawsuit to Indoctrinate New State Employees Dismissed

On Tuesday, January 17, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit by the so-called “Freedom” Foundation against a Washington State agency, calling it among other things, “factually and legally unsupported,” “hyperbolic” and “not tenable.” 

The anti-worker organization sued the State of Washington to try to run their own new employee orientations (NEO) at the Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I).

U.S. District Court Judge Coughenor slammed the door on their plea, writing:

“If this argument were to be accepted, then L&I would have to host a seemingly infinite number of presenters to satisfy every possible opposing viewpoint on every conceivable topic. NEOs would unravel into an ideological blackhole, and L&I employees would never graduate from orientation to begin serving the community. The Court would never endorse such an outcome, and the law does not require it.”

Judge Coughenor also clarified that the union representing Labor & Industries employees, the Washington Federation of State Employees (WFSE), has the right to meet with new staff, while the “Freedom” Foundation – a “political advocacy group with no contractual or legal relationship with L&I employees” – simply does not.

The extremist group has made filing frivolous lawsuits against government and labor unions part of its failed strategy to “defund and defang” organized Labor. Their President once justified the tactic, saying: “I don’t even care if we win many of these cases…” – as long as they cost labor unions money in attorney fees. 

The “Freedom” Foundation also runs a spam-email operation called “Opt Out Today” that hopes to trick union members into quitting. The group has invested millions of dollars into the campaign across a seven-year span, with little to show for their efforts. Much like their latest court case, the Opt Out Today postcards and email have been “dismissed with prejudice” by unionized workers.