News Release

Grand Rapids Teacher Files State Charges Against Union and School District for Circumventing Right to Work Law

Union and school officials collude to force school employees into dues-paying union ranks despite Right to Work law

Grand Rapids, MI (July 18, 2014) – A Grand Rapids-area special education teacher has filed state charges against a local union and the school district for violating Michigan's Right to Work law.

With free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, Becky Lapham of Portland, Michigan, filed the state charges with the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) in Detroit.

The 11-year Lincoln Developmental Center school teacher filed charges against the Michigan Education Association (MEA) union and Grand Rapids Public Schools for entering into an agreement illegally amending and extending the forced dues provisions in the monopoly bargaining agreement beyond the date allowed under Michigan's Right to Work law for public employees.

That law specifies that contracts or amendments entered into after the law went into effect must respect workers' right to refrain from the payment of any union dues or fees.

Furthermore, Lapham's other charge filed in April, after MEA union officials refused to acknowledge her unequivocal right to refrain from union membership, is still pending with the MERC.

"Across the state, union officials 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. "Foundation staff attorneys are assisting workers throughout the state whose rights under Michigan’s Right to Work law are being denied by unscrupulous union officials seeking to circumvent the law."

The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, is assisting thousands of employees in over 200 cases nationwide.

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