A REPRINT FROM THE last night's MEA Message-
CALL TO ACTION - Fight Latest Attacks on Unions' Ability to Conduct Business
- Unions are already required to reimburse the school district for retirement costs on release time. There is no cost savings to the district through passing this bill.
- If the leaders are not able to get service credit for union release time, then the school district is not reimbursed for the retirement costs for that time. The MPSERS cost for that time will become the responsibility of the school district, further stretching school budgets to the tune of $1 million.
- Collective bargaining agreements that allow for employer-paid union leave time are the norm in both the public and private sector. These arrangements benefit both sides by allowing for regular contact with labor and management representatives and for ease of processing day to day employee issues and utilizing the skills of employees to collaborate with management on things like professional development, mentoring, school improvement, etc.
- Whether it is a few hours per month to handle employment matters, or a full-time union official on union leave, these arrangements are collectively bargained and agreed upon by both sides in the contract. Allowing for beneficial cooperation between labor and management is especially important in schools where administration and educators need to work closely together to help students succeed.
- If paid union leave time is banned, union representatives will be less able to perform necessary work during normal business hours. This will result in this work being moved to non-business hours at much hassle and expense to the employer.
- The addition of language banning payroll deduction of dues for community colleges is an unnecessary restraint on the rights of those employees to use the money in their paychecks as they see fit. In an age of electronic payroll processing, there is no cost to employers to conduct these withdrawals - in fact, community colleges will likely incur increased costs to implement this ban. And this ban has nothing to do with the rest of the contents of this bill, that's been under consideration for more than a year.