Education Minnesota is asking teachers to sign Membership Agreements; these forms are filled out for teachers so all they have to do is sign. The union needs to have written proof of membership to be in compliance with the Janus decision. The union is also telling teachers who have not signed the card that they are members in good standing.
We got an email this morning saying:
My friend did not sign the “member renewal” card last year and was repeatedly asked to do so this year but she never did. They sent her a reminder that she is in regardless of her refusal. She is sending her opt-out letters today.
We are trying to find out if this teacher’s school is deducting dues; if so both the union and school could be subject to legal liability. This is because the Court in Janus said that teachers had to give their “affirmative consent” before dues can be deducted. And schools cannot just ask the union; they have to have evidence of that consent from teachers and ESPs.
Have you been asked to sign one of these forms? Or told you are a union member even if you have not signed a form?
Please know that you are not required to sign. You can keep your job if you are not a member of the union; that has always been true. What is new is that you can keep your job and not pay fair-share dues (85%). These are your rights under the First Amendment.
If you think you may have signed a card and do not wish to be a member, it is a good idea to resign (opt-out) during the union’s 7-day window to be sure. Otherwise, you will probably have to wait until next year.
There are no more “fair-share” fees. The Court said they are unconstitutional. So you are either a member or not a member. In order to be a member, you have to sign a union card. (We think union cards teachers signed before the Janus case on June 27, 2018 are not valid. We also think the 7-day window is unconstitutional. But we have to win those fights in court.)
The union raised dues by $14 last year to pay for the membership renewal campaign ($11 went to Education Minnesota; $3 to NEA). And dues have gone up another $7 this year.