A Retiree Speaks Out: We Fought For Your Benefits. Don’t Throw Them Away With Your Membership!

I recently had the opportunity to view information concerning the number of public school employees who either are not paying their union dues or have opted out of the union.

When I started teaching we had no benefits and had to pay for them ourselves. I was in the trenches along with many others throughout the state fighting to get you, yes you, the benefits you enjoy today.

The main goal of groups like ALEC and the Mackinac Center is to destroy public schools. When you don’t pay your dues or opt out of the MEA you are doing exactly what they want.

if you want to experience what it was like when I started teaching, tell your superintendent that you want to pay your full insurance premium and that you do not want sick leave, personal days or any other benefits. Try this for a year and see if it works for you.


Do you want to destroy the union that helped you get these benefits, the union that is continuing to work for you today? I know some of you have children to raise and a mortgage, etc.. In our tough years of bargaining, we all had the same challenges but we stayed united and succeeded to get the benefits you enjoy today.

If you still continue to not pay your dues or opt out , I hope each morning when you look in the mirror you way, “I helped to weaken the MEA and assisted in destroying public schools.”


Earl Eliason

Retired Teacher

2 thoughts on “A Retiree Speaks Out: We Fought For Your Benefits. Don’t Throw Them Away With Your Membership!

  1. Thanks for this article. ……. And tell them that their class size, materials for teaching, prep periods, professional development and paid conferences, along with many other “benefits” were hard fought by the union workers in the trenches. Employee’s ARE the union! So be a part of what makes education not only a great profession, but one that can support a living in this state, and support the union that got you the great job you have today. For without the union, none of those “benefits” would be available.

    Best Jeff

    Jeff McNally 2318 Newport Road Ann Arbor, MI 48103 Cell Phone: 734 417-3057 Professor of Biology Washtenaw Community College


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