Iowa union files lawsuit against collective bargaining law

Posted at 11:11 AM, Feb 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-20 12:11:10-05

Iowa's largest state employees union has filed a lawsuit challenging a new law that eliminates most collective bargaining rights for public workers.

 The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Iowa Council 61 filed the lawsuit Monday in Polk County District Court. It seeks an order halting immediate enforcement of the changes.

The law, signed by Gov. Terry Branstad on Friday, prohibits public sector unions from negotiating over issues like health insurance and supplemental pay. It exempts certain public safety employees such as law enforcement officers and firefighters from some negotiating provisions.

The lawsuit claims the law establishes two classes of public employee bargaining units, and the designation violates language in the state constitution that ensures equality to citizens.

A message for the governor's office wasn't immediately returned Monday.