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Halloween is just around the corner, and so is the deadline for teachers to request a refund of the forced political action committee (PAC) contribution the union deducts from teachers’ paychecks.
Because the $25 PAC deduction is treated as part of union dues, teachers cannot choose to opt-out of the deduction once and for all—they must request the refund every year. Under the First Amendment, the union must then honor the refund request because PAC money is spent on partisan politics. It does not pay for collective bargaining; it pays for electioneering.
The union should not be able to just take this money out of paychecks with regular dues and then force busy educators to jump through bureaucratic hoops to get $25 back. Instead, the union should ask its members to contribute voluntarily. This would better respect the varying political ideologies and points of view teachers have, not to mention save them precious time.
But, until the legislature or a court order fixes this, below are the steps to follow if Minnesota’s educators want to protect their right to not fund the union’s PAC. Please share with any teacher who may not know about this refund opportunity.
Follow these steps to request your refund (DEADLINE: October 31)
Fill out the refund request form found in the union’s magazine Minnesota Educator (p. 18). Education Minnesota does not accept photocopies of the form, but we did confirm with the union that it will accept a printed color copy of the form if teachers no longer have the magazine.
Mail it to:
Education Minnesota Accounting Department
Attn: Refund Request
41 Sherburne Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55103-2196
The union must receive the refund request form by October 31 for continuing members or within 30 days of signing a membership application for new members.
Don’t wait until the last minute! Postmark your form by Halloween and let the union know its politics don’t speak for you.
Reach out to us at info@EducatedTeachersMN.com if you have questions about the refund process.