MEA Responds to Mackinac Center Lawsuit

EAST LANSING, Mich., March 3, 2014--The following statement can be attributed to Steven Cook, President, Michigan Education Association:

“The MEA has a fiduciary responsibility to all of its members to make sure that every member is held accountable for dues owed to the organization. The MEA is no different than any other organization when faced with collecting on its accounts receivable.

Just like in many other organizations, membership in the MEA comes with a dues obligation. The dues obligation is an on-going, yearly commitment unless the member notifies the MEA that he/she wants to terminate their organizational relationship with MEA. This process is governed by the bylaws of the Association. We had 1500 members exercise that right under the Association’s bylaws and we have respected their right to opt out.

In addition, we have an undetermined number who are late in their payments. Once we have verified that these members are not fulfilling their payment responsibility, the MEA will work with each member to help them meet their commitment. If we can verify that the failure to pay is based on a bona fide refusal to reimburse the Association, then additional steps will be taken to recover the outstanding dues payment.

The collection of dues is a responsibility that we have to all our members; we need to make sure that every member is paying their fair share until such time they are no longer an MEA member. As to the most recent lawsuit filed by the Mackinac Center, the claims are without merit. Through the legal process, the MEA and the Novi Education Association will vigorously defend their lawful and appropriate actions in this case.”

Contact: Nancy Knight, Director of Communications and Public Policy, 517-337-5508