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Membership Decline Among
Nation's Largest Unions

SEIU 503 Included

    (SALEM, Ore.) -- SEIU 503, Oregon's largest labor union, has suffered one of the nation's most dramatic membership declines since the U.S. Supreme Court landmark ruling last summer in Janus v. AFSCME.
    In the wake of Janus, which eliminated mandatory union dues or fees for government employees, the Freedom Foundation originally reported SEIU 503 had lost 21 percent of its members. In fact, a more recent information request finds the actual loss is 26 percent.
    Freedom Foundation Oregon Director Aaron Withe said even he was surprised by the defection rate. In an interview with Oregon Public Broadcasting, Withe said he anticipated union losses would reach 20 to 30 percent in the first year.
    Instead, it's taken only six months.
    The state's official numbers debunk the claims of the SEIU 503 Executive Director Melissa Unger, who actually boasted a 2.2 percent increase.
    Both SEIU's LM-2 report and the numbers from the state expose her... [spin].
    Much of the decline can be attributed to the Freedom Foundation's aggressive outreach efforts to public employees across Oregon represented by SEIU 503.
    "It's one thing to have the law on your side," Withe said. "It's something else to have to the union respect it."
    Following the Janus decision, SEIU 503 and other public-employee unions hatched a variety of schemes to avoid compliance.
    At first, they simply pretended it never happened and refused to notify the workers of their newly affirmed rights.
    Later, as workers began to discover the truth, the unions either lied to them, resisted their opt-out requests or tricked them into signing membership renewals that claimed to be irrevocable.
    In response, the Freedom Foundation launched a full-scale outreach campaign to public-sector employees in Oregon, Washington and California to inform them of their workplace rights.
    The newly disclosed numbers show which side has the more compelling case. "The unions did everything they could to prevent the Janus ruling from happening," Withe said.
    "When the court ignored them and issued the ruling anyway, they tried to invalidate it. Finally, when all else failed, they resorted to denial.
    "None of it worked."

Oregon's Office of Small Business Advocacy
Releases 2018 Annual Report

Our late
Secretary of State,
Dennis Richardson

    (SALEM, Ore.)-- Today, the Secretary of State Small Business Advocacy Team released their fifth Annual Report. The report provides high-level data regarding concerns and questions raised by businesses and nonprofits about state and local government throughout the 2018 calendar year.
    The Small Business Advocates are housed in the Office of Small Business Assistance, part of the Corporations Division of the Office of Secretary of State. Created by the Legislature in 2013 and opened in 2014, the office and its Advocacy Team work toward solutions and finding answers for businesses and nonprofits with zero to 100 employees.
    "Small businesses are the lifeblood of Oregon's economy, and we here at the Secretary of State's office want to do all we can to ensure their success," said Secretary of State Dennis Richardson. "The Small Business Advocacy Team is one of the most valuable assets the state provides to help small businesses navigate the red tape of starting and maintaining a thriving business."
    Oregon is one of just a handful of states that provides this free, confidential service to the business community. In addition to dealing with concerns of business owners, the Advocates also assist aspiring entrepreneurs as they start their first business, working in concert with existing technical assistance and capital resources throughout the state.
    "It's incredibly rewarding to work across industry sectors and regulatory silos to solve problems and find answers for business," said Small Business Advocate and Agency Tribal Liaison Ruth Miles. "We're excited to share with everyone the results of a year's worth of hard work and the trends and data gathered over the first five years of the team's existence."
    The 2018 report can be found online at osba-annual-report.aspx along with copies of previous years' annual reports.
    To request assistance from the Small Business Advocacy Team, go to: http://, call toll-free 1-844-469-5512, or email Business.SOS@

Local Author To Release Second Novel
A novel that's loosely based on a failed survival trip to Hawaii

Derek E. Keeling is
an award - winning journalist,
author, content writer, and social
media coordinator. He began his
love of writing as a teen and
it has since flourished into
a profound passion. His work has
been featured< in numerous
publications, including books,
magazines, newspapers, blogs,
websites, and more.
In his free time he enjoys
spending time with his beautiful
wife and daughter.

    For Damon, his grand adventure is being alone on an island. His plan was simple: fly to a deserted island for a month, hone his survival skills, and return home.
    Unfortunately, on the way, his plane crashes and leaves him alone on an island with no chance of help or rescue. Damon must use his skills to survive, but something watching him from the jungle's edge seems to enjoy his failures.
    Damon's fight for survival doesn't come easy in this action-packed adventure that will leave you breathless. With twists and turns that will keep you guessing, take a trip with Damon to a ruthless place where life struggles to survive and eyes stalk your every move. Will Damon adapt? Or will the unknown entity in the jungle become his biggest threat?
    Author Derek E. Keeling's upcoming novel, Nomad's Island, is loosely based on a trip the author took to Hawaii in 2007. Keeling's goal was to live in the jungle, survive off the land, and hunt wild boars. Unfortunately, the trip ended due to extenuating factors.
    Keeling's novel is based on the idea of someone wanting to survive alone in a controlled environment, only to be forced to survive without a safety net. The novel takes a sharp turn when the main character learns that he's not alone.
    Nomad's Island has action, adventure, mystery, suspense, horror, and even roma nce. Keeling's novel will keep readers palms sweating as they uncover the truth about Nomad's Island. Sometimes, however, the truth can be difficult to accept. Nomad's Island will be released on March 2, 2019.
    "I'm very proud of how this story turned out. Unfortunately for the reader, they'll never expect the way this one unfolds .
    Just when they think they have it figured out, the knife will twist a little deeper in their mind."
    -- Derek E. Keeling.