FENTON, Mich. - Members of the Fenton Education Support Personnel have voted to leave the Michigan Education Association and join Teamsters Local 214, saying they want better representation, according to the (Fenton) Tri-County Times.

Carla Juarez, chief steward, said that the group needs to be represented by a union that recognizes the needs of the support staff, the Times reported.  

Juarez told the Times that, since 2007, support staff in Fenton Area Public Schools agreed twice to lower-cost insurance, gave up paid holidays for one year and agreed to two years of pay freezes. She described the union as proactively working with administrators both to save money and protect support staff jobs, the Times reported.

Negotiations will begin soon on the next employee contract, the Times reported.

"It is important to make changes, even hard changes, such as changing insurances and looking at pay freezes, just to name a couple," Juarez told the Times. "It is time for all groups in the district to become part of the solution, not part of the problem."

SOURCE:
(Fenton) Tri-County Times, "FESP staff makes union switch from MEA to Teamsters," March 6, 2010

FURTHER READING:
Mackinac Center for Public Policy, "Union Spending in Michigan: International Brotherhood of Teamsters," Aug. 28, 2008

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