Thursday, April 05, 2018

NY POST EXPLAINS NEW UNION LAW

Federal labor law provides for a duty to fair representation. However, NYS may have defined that down for public sector unions in the Empire State.

The NY Post has an Article on the new state labor law that was sent to me by my friend Bronx ATR.

Some details:

A provision tucked into the state budget gives public-employee unions the right to deny many services, such as free legal help, to covered employees who opt not to join or pay dues.

The US Supreme Court is soon expected to decide whether states such as New York that give unions the right to compel payment of “agency fees” from workers who refuse to join violate those employees’ First Amendment rights.

The fees are basically a portion of regular union dues, excluding spending on political activities.

To push employees to keep filling union coffers, the new state law says unions are no longer obligated to provide any services to opt-out members beyond basic salary and benefits required by contract.

For example, an opt-out worker who is brought up on disciplinary charges now has to pay for his or her own lawyer instead of using a union attorney without charge.

“It’s to let employees know what they’re getting. Why should you be getting benefits if you don’t pay dues?” asked Assemblyman Peter Abbate (D-Brooklyn), who chairs the Governmental Employees Committee and helped draft the law in consultation with the state AFL-CIO.

“If you’re not paying dues, then there’s not enough money for the unions to provide you service.”

In addition, the law makes it easier for unions to sign up workers and more difficult for workers to withdraw, by requiring the government to begin dues deductions “no later than 30 days” after getting an authorization form.


It looks like it will be as close to business as usual as possible post Janus. We thought this might be tied up in the courts for a long time and that could come true.

The only real way to change the situation is not to opt out of a union but to come together as a real rank and file driven union.

Leadership is out to keep the dues gravy train rolling as their first priority. Do not underestimate their ability in this area. For example, have you ever tried to stop voluntary COPE contributions? You can do it but it takes some work.

If the UFT leadership were a tenth as skilled at protecting teachers as they are at looking out for themselves, virtually nobody would be under attack. We would have our professional dignity back.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is it just the lawyer we would lose?

Anonymous said...

You can read as well as us.

Anonymous said...

The question is, what did we teachers give up in order for our fat cats to get this perk from Cuomo. Don’t tell me norhing. This is Transactional Andy we’re talking about. A promise was made in the Governor’s mansion and we deserve to know what it was.

Anonymous said...

Good luck getting that out of Mulgrew.

Anonymous said...

This is disgusting. Nothing is going to change now. The whippings will continue as usual.

Anonymous said...

As arrogant as Mulgrew is, along with the corrupt NY politicians, thinking they can get around this, they are not above the law of the land as dictated by SCOTUS.

There may be a battle, but they will get squashed.

Anonymous said...

IDEAL Maybe a large group of NYC teachers can opt out and pool our dues money and organize a legal team of lawyers on retainer to use in case of 3020a or other charges such as verbal abuse or corporal punishment. The only thing that the UFT provides worth money is a lawyer. Everything else the UFT does is total bullshit and not in our best interest.

James Eterno said...

May as well have a union then 8:50.

8:35, Did you really think the unions were going down that easily? Tying this down in further litigation as this new state law is challenged is a very reasonable strategy.

Anonymous said...

Mulgrew wants to continue to feast at the dues provided gravy train. How many tens of thousands of dollars of take out orders does Mulgrew consume each year?

Anonymous said...

so now they have the legal right in NY to deny services if i choose my legal right to not pay their high dues, like lawyer? prescription drugs? union negotiated pay raises?

this state is so corrupt, nothing is going to change. Why bother having the supreme court case, nothing will happen.

Anonymous said...

The Independent Democratic Caucus needs to go. This is a group of so called Democrats who always vote with the Republicans.
Stop voting for them:
Jeffrey D Klein Bronx and Westchester
David Carlucci. Westchester, Rockland
Marisol Alcantara Chelsea, Clinton, Garment district, Hamilton Heights, Harlem, Inwood, Midtown Manhattan, Morningside Heights, UWS,
Washington Heights
Tony Avella. Coll├Ęge Point, Whitestone,Bayside, Little Neck, Douglaston, Floral Park, Beechhurst, Malba, Auburndale
Jose Peralta. Corona, East Elmhurst, Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Woodside
Diane Savino. Northern Staten Island, Sunset Park, Coney Island
David J Valesky Rome, Madison County, Eastern and Southern Onondaga County, Eastern Syracuse, Cayuga County

Anonymous said...

union lawyers provided have not been helpful. Smart teachers higher their own lawyer and fair much better.

Bronx ATR said...

I know about ten teachers that have gone through a 3020a. Eight out of the ten paid for their own lawyers and won. The other two used the union's lawyers and lost. This is not enough of reason to stay in the UFT. If the UFT does something positive for ATRs - i.e. end fair funding, give ATRs a choice of three schools to stay, etc., I would stay in a heartbeat. Many teachers and ATRs are looking for any reason to stay, but the UFT ignores and insults us. Hopefully, they'll come to their senses.

Anonymous said...

Do you know who the lawyers were? Do you have lawyers you can recommend?

Anonymous said...

I know 3 teachers brought up on charges and they all used private lawyers. They are all still teaching but one became an ATR after his case was settled. So, maybe the lawyer thing is not a good enough reason to stay in the UFT.

Bronx ATR said...

Anon 3:00, They all went with Glasser.

Bronx Teacher said...

This is fine by me. You stop paying union dues, you should get nothing. Hell, I don't think Albany went far enough. You should have to negotiate your own salaries, benefits, and pensions.

Each chapter should have a list of those that aren't paying in and all should be labeled as rats.

Anonymous said...

You must be another guy who used a private lawyer otherwise you wouldn't be working now.

Anonymous said...

Bronx Teacher you wouldn't use a union lawyer? And you're chastising people? Go back to haunting Portolos.

Bronx Teacher said...

I didn’t use a union lawyer? So who was that lawyer sitting next to me at my 3020-a from NYSUT?

Anonymous said...

That must be before you fired him and hired Glass. I read your blog too.

Anonymous said...

BRONX TEACHER: I thought you used Glass as your lawyer. Fill us in if we are wrong on this.

ed notes online said...

I was at Bronx Teacher's hearings and he used an excellent NYSUT lawyer and is still standing. I believe he used Glass for his private suit against the DOE.
In addition I attended over a dozen of Portelos' hearings and his NYSUT lawyer was excellent - and also handled David Pakter.
One of my former colleagues hired her own lawyer and he was a disaster. So it is a crap shoot.
NYSUT lawyers won't go certain places in a case so that could be a neg. But they also know the system very well - ie the opposing DOE lawyer and the hearing officer. They know how far to go and what buttons to push or not push. I got to speak to both these lawyers and understood their thinking.
Also - I believe the CPE1 teachers who got off completely also used NYSUT lawyers.

Anonymous said...

So the suckers, us, keep paying the uft and nothing changes. No thanks.

ATRocity said...

I’m ok with all that - the last contract stays in effect until I do so. A lot better than give backs. They can label me whatever they want it’s an improvement over the label ATR.

Highly Effective King Clovis said...

Blogger Bronx Teacher said...
This is fine by me. You stop paying union dues, you should get nothing. Hell, I don't think Albany went far enough. You should have to negotiate your own salaries, benefits, and pensions.

Each chapter should have a list of those that aren't paying in and all should be labeled as rats.

I wish I could agree with this more. I'd even extend it to vacation days. If you're going to be in the union and not pay dues, it isn't fair to the rest of us. You should have to do most of the legwork yourself if you don't want to be a union member.