New Jersey State AFL-CIO mourns the loss of Justice Ginsburg

New Jersey State AFL-CIO mourns the loss of Justice Ginsburg

The New Jersey State AFL-CIO mourns the passing of U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a champion for civil rights, women’s rights and workers’ rights.

“Justice Ginsburg always sided with organized labor, even when the conservative-leaning court ruled against unions in cases like Janus v. AFSCME,” New Jersey State AFL-CIO President Charles Wowkanech said. “Her dissenting opinions that upheld the right to organize, to collectively bargain, and to stop America’s return to ‘yellow dog’ hiring practices and so-called ‘right-to-work’ were passionate and well-reasoned. Her loss is huge.”

Even when in the minority on the Supreme Court, Justice Ginsburg’s fierce dissents provoked action on behalf of all who labor. Her opinion in the Ledbetter v. Goodyear case, for example, led to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.

Justice Ginsburg died Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, at age 87 of metastatic pancreas cancer, which she had battled for years. The Brooklyn native was educated at Cornell, Harvard and Columbia universities, and taught at Rutgers and Columbia.  Her courtroom battles against sex discrimination as the director of the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union in the 1970s led to constitutional protections against sex discrimination.

“She was a hero to every woman who ever stepped foot in the workplace,” New Jersey State AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Laurel Brennan said. “She was a hero to every union member, woman or man, and she never stopped fighting for what is right and what is fair, right up until the end.”

“On behalf of our union brothers and sisters,” President Wowkanech said, “we ask the president and the Senate to select a judge who stands for working people as much as Justice Ginsburg did.”

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