A new lawsuit by the Chicago Teachers Union seeks to overturn a city ordinance that bans teachers from being unionized and instead allow teachers to form unions at schools that don’t require them.
The union is seeking a court order to stop the policy and the city to pay back a portion of its costs for the suit.
The Tribune-Review reports the city had estimated the policy would cost the city more than $1 billion over the next five years.
The suit seeks to prevent the city from violating the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment’s ban on unreasonable searches and seizures, as well as the state’s Equal Protection Clause, the Tribune- Review reported.
It argues the policy is a violation of teachers’ right to assemble and that the ordinance violates the rights of the teachers who formed unions.
The Chicago Teachers union has argued the city’s policy is necessary to protect students from dangerous students who attend the city school system.
“We don’t believe this policy is justified and it is in direct violation of the rights and freedoms guaranteed by the U and U.C. Constitutions,” the union said in a statement.
“This is a clear violation of our First Amendment rights and the constitutional rights of all citizens in our city.”
Chicago’s ordinance, which was passed in May, requires all school districts to allow teachers union representation, and it requires districts to have a “safe school” policy in place by August.
A majority of school districts across the state, however, are in compliance with the ordinance.
In addition to the Illinois Constitution, the school board of each district is also required to pass a charter amendment.
In the lawsuit, the union argued the charter amendment “unconstitutionally compels school districts and school administrators to enter into binding contract agreements with teachers.”
The union said the Chicago school board violated the charter by giving its consent to the policy.
“The charter amendment’s terms are so vague that the charter does not require any explicit terms about the school district’s role or duties,” the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit claims that teachers who joined the union were not required to join the union under the charter, and that teachers are not allowed to join because they don’t have the proper paperwork to join.
It also argues that the Chicago charter “does not require the district to maintain a union in the same capacity that it does now.”
The city has also said it will not reimburse the city for any of the cost of the suit, and the lawsuit will be reviewed by the Illinois Supreme Court.