A decision issued by the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) nixed the Michigan Education Association’s (the Union) rule that members can only opt out of the Union during the month of August.  Administrative Law Judge Julia Stern reasoned that the Union violated Michigan state law by preventing teachers and staff who wanted to leave the Union’s ranks from doing so until the ‘opt-out window’ opened on August 1. 

Several teachers alleged that they tried to leave the Union in September and October of last year.  When they asked to opt out, the Union refused to let them leave, telling the teachers that they could only resign from the union during the “opt-out’ period in August.  The complaint even alleges that Union officials threatened to hire debt collectors to recover unpaid Union dues from the dissenting teachers.

Union officials lambasted the ruling and vowed to appeal.  We will keep you posted as this case moves forward.

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