SEIU Dues Skim Comes to an End

Union was able to extract $34 million from home-based caregivers through stealth unionization scheme

Monday, March 4, 2013
Ted O’Neil
Media Relations Manager

MIDLAND — A dues skim that funneled more than $34 million to the Service Employees International Union over the last six years has come to an end.

As reported today in Michigan Capitol Confidential, the Michigan Department of Community Health said that checks to be mailed to home-based caregivers today will be the last ones to have union dues skimmed from them. The stealth unionization scheme that began during the administration of former Gov. Jennifer Granholm ended Feb. 28 when a contract extension between the SEIU and the Michigan Quality Community Care Council expired. Many of the tens of thousands of people who were trapped by the dues skim were family members caring for the state’s most vulnerable residents.

“This has been a difficult battle against a union machine with deep pockets,” said Patrick J. Wright, director of the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation. “Thousands of innocent people have finally received the justice they were due.”

Legal action by the MCLF against the SEIU continues.

This is the third time in three years that the MCLF has played a major role in bringing about the end of a stealth unionization effort. The first occurred in March 2011 when Gov. Rick Snyder signed an executive order ending a similar scheme that trapped several thousand home-based day care providers in a union. The second ended in March 2012 when Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation clarifying that graduate student research assistants at state universities are not public employees and thus cannot be forced into collective bargaining agreements.

“Hopefully we’ve seen the last of these kinds of shenanigans,” Wright said. “Moving forward unions should stick to representing the people who actually choose to pay for membership and stop trying to shanghai people against their will and without their knowledge.”

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is a research and educational institute headquartered in Midland, Mich. The largest state-based free-market think tank in the country celebrates its 25th anniversary this year.


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