MEA President Vows Legal Action to Maintain Dues

By: Fay Li Email
By: Fay Li Email

Despite cries from unions in December, Right to Work is law in Michigan, giving employees of union shops the option to pt out of paying dues.

“You have a choice, you can remain a member of the association and pay dues or you can become a freeloader,” said MEA President Steven Cook.

However, according to the MEA, that’s not a cue for members to leave the union whenever they please. Cook says the membership application clearly state the only time to exit in August and as indicated in a leaked memo from MEA, the union is sticking to that rule, promising legal action against those who fail to pay up.

“If a member says for example, well I’m just not going to pay my dues, we will exercise our rights under the law to collect what the association dues are,” Cook said.

According to MEA’s president, they’re simply exercising their fair rights and even the opposition agrees with them, but argues what’s written in the memo is a clear sign.

“They certainly have shown they don’t want to make it easy for members to have the freedom to choose to not be a member,” said Jack Hoogendyk from grassroots organization “Michigan Freedom to Work.”

The group picked up on MEA’s memo and urged people to support their cause in preserving the “Right to Work” law.

“I think they should have the freedom to choose to inform the union any time of their wishes to resign their membership when their contract is up, rather than force them into a very small window,” said Hoogendyk.

President Steven Cook says they will likely file a lawsuit against the state. He won’t reveal more specifics, but did say the lawsuit could emerge as early as next week.


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