Friday, January 21, 2011

Meanwhile in Alabama...

A measure designed to force Alabama Education Association members to chose between advocating for Alabama schools or payroll deduction squeeked by the Alabama legislature last week. The measure criminalizes many non-campaign actions if the teachers' union members use the current dues system.

According to, It is now illegal in Alabama for a teacher to work for passing a local tax referendum, publicly criticize an elected official for raiding a school budget, or doing any kind of advocacy on behalf of their students if they use payroll deduction to pay membership dues. The law specifically makes it illegal for AEA to undertake public opinion polling on issues like charter schools, make telephone calls to members about state budgets, or publish the votes of legislators in the Alabama School Journal.

The law is intended to make it more difficult for educators to become and remain members by forcing the group to eliminate payroll deduction.

But what was not expected by the legislature was the resiliency of Alabama educators.
“AEA was here long before [current politicians] were here, and we’ll be here long after they are gone,” said Dr. Paul Hubbert...To overcome the loss of payroll deduction, AEA has set up a new system called AEA Automatic Dues Pay. Electronic drafts from checking accounts take the place of payroll deductions, dues stay the same, and educators are sure to protect their schools and membership by enrolling in AEA Automatic Dues Pay. It is also the best way to tell [the politicians] and the special interests that Alabama educators know how to deal with bullies.

The first rule is to stand up to them.

HT 2 Amanda

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