Michigan Education Association

Collective Bargaining

“…You get a contract. That doesn’t happen from thin air, but from dedicated work by your colleagues, with excellent legal and pragmatic advice from your MEA UniServ director, backed by a skilled organization.” – Gary Thompson, Saginaw Valley State University Faculty Association president, English professor

With passage of Michigan’s Public Employment Relations Act (PERA) in 1965, teachers went from begging to bargaining.

Now all school employees have the right to negotiate fair wages and decent working conditions. The MEA staff helps you do just that. Your dues pays for the professional
bargainers, lawyers and other experts you need to uphold all aspects of your contract.


Collective Bargaining





Updated: February 19, 2009 6:47 PM

Did You Know?

  • MEA has more than 160,000 members.

  • MEA members include employees of traditional
    K-12 public school districts and intermediate districts,
    charter public schools, community colleges and public
    universities, as well as public school retirees and future

  • MEA employees help members bargain more than 3,600
    contracts. While some contracts cover two or more years,
    a large percentage of contracts last just one year, which
    means that bargaining is nearly continuous from year to

The federal Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act guarantees certain rights to union members and imposes certain responsibilities on union officers. You have:

  • Equal rights to participate in union activities

  • Freedom of speech and assembly

  • Voice in setting rates of dues, fees and assessments

  • Protection of the right to sue

  • Safeguards against improper discipline