Special Needs Teaching Assistant Files Charge against Union for Ignoring Her Rights Under Michigan's Right to Work Law
Teacher union officials stonewall worker's attempt to resign from union membership and dues payments
Pinckney, MI (October 23, 2013) – A local special needs classroom assistant has filed a state charge against a local teacher union for violating her rights under Michigan's recently enacted public-sector Right to Work law.
With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Linda Evon of Pinckney filed the state charge late last week with the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) in Detroit.
Evon, who works as a special needs classroom assistant for Pinckney Community Schools, informed the Michigan Education Association (MEA) union on September 4, 2013, that she was exercising her right under Michigan's Right to Work law to refrain from union dues payments after the union's monopoly bargaining agreement with her employer expired on June 30, 2013. Under Michigan's Right to Work law, contracts entered into after the law went into effect must respect workers' right to refrain from the payment of any union dues.
Instead of complying with Evon's request, MEA union officials told her that she would have to wait for a union-designated "window period" of August 1 through August 31 before she could resign union membership and refrain from union dues payments.
Evon points out in her charge that Michigan's Right to Work law protects her unequivocal right to refrain from union membership at any time. Analogously, Supreme Court precedent under federal labor law also protects workers' absolute right to refrain from union membership at any time without penalty.
"Across the state, union bosses are pulling out all the stops to keep workers from exercising their rights under Michigan's Right to Work law," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "In a growing number of Foundation cases now, union officials face state or federal charges for denying workers their rights under Michigan's Right to Work law."
"Foundation attorneys will continue their efforts to assist workers whose rights are violated by unscrupulous union bosses," added Mix.