Schlaud v. Snyder, No. 12-1105 (6th Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
Plaintiffs receive subsidies from Michigan’s Child Development and Care Program for providing home childcare services for low-income families. Following creation of the Home Based Child Care Council, a union was established and authorized to bargain on their behalf, based on submission of 22,180 valid provider-signed authorization cards out of a possible 40,532 eligible providers. The union and the Council entered into a collective bargaining agreement and the state began deducting union dues and fees from the subsidy payments. Plaintiffs sought to file a class-action lawsuit for the return of the money, collected allegedly in violation of their First Amendment rights. The district court denied certification of plaintiffs’ proposed class (all home childcare providers in Michigan) based on conflict of interest: some members voted for union representation and others voted against representation. Plaintiffs attempted to cure by proposing a subclass of only providers who did not participate in any election related to union representation. The district court rejected the proposal, finding that it could not assume that all members of the subclass opposed representation and that, even if all members of the proposed subclass did oppose representation, their reasons for opposition were different enough to create conflict within the class. The Sixth Circuit affirmed.
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on May 12, 2015.