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Michigan Teacher Union Sends Bill Collector After Teacher
posted by: Ruthie | June 19, 2014, 05:31 PM   

Despite the advent of right-to-work laws in Michigan, the Michigan Education Association (MEA) recently sent bill collectors after a kindergarten teacher and AAE member for her “unpaid union dues.”

The state’s NEA affiliate sent a collector to recoup Ms. Kimberle Byrd’s $400 in unpaid dues, despite her claim that she opted out of union membership as soon as she had the chance. An AAE member, Ms. Byrd already receives liability coverage and other professional benefits.

Ms. Byrd said she considered herself out of the union as of last year, when her contract expired. “They keep trying to beat you down and make you feel like you are so alone,” Byrd said.  She continued, “Now, they are going to ruin my credit.”

Ms. Byrd estimates that she has paid as much as $17,000 in forced dues throughout her 19-year teaching career. She was unaware that August was her only month to opt out of the union, and assumed she was “free and clear” when her contract ended in August because of the state’s passage of right-to-work laws.

"They wait until September to start telling you how to pay your dues because they don't want to tell you how to get out," Ms. Byrd told a reporter. "They give you no instructions, no paperwork, no anything prior to September. And at that point, it's too late."

Unfortunately other Michigan teachers are falling victims to these bullying tactics and misinformation. Don’t let it happen to you!

If you or someone you know is a Michigan teacher, don't forget to spread the word about the short August opt-out period. The Mackinac Center for Public Policy has created a website, in an effort to guide teachers through the process of dropping MEA membership.

We’re supportive of this initiative as the issue of compulsory unionism is at the heart of why AAE was founded as an alternative to teacher labor unions. We believe that the teachers, as college-educated professionals, should be able to decide whether union membership matches his or her budget and beliefs. Teachers deserve to make informed choices.

We hope you will take this opportunity to let your colleagues know about this campaign and AAE as an alternative to the high dues and partisan politics of NEA affiliates. It's critical that your fellow teachers are covered by an individual liability insurance policy!

Click here
for more information about where the NEA spends dues dollars.



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