HEA MEMBERS: Did you get an email at work from OptOutToday.com? Mine went to my Spam Folder, WHERE IT BELONGS! If you receive one of these emails and have questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your HEA representatives.
The Freedom Foundation, AKA Choice For Teachers, AKA The Koch Brothers, are up to their old tricks: Trying to trick you into opting out of your union membership.
Teachers and educational professionals across the state are receiving these emails in a carefully-crafted plan to trick you into giving up your rights and privileges of being a union member. Don’t fall for it!
When unions are weaker, workers have fewer rights: it is that simple. The problem is compounded in public education, because when educational professionals have fewer rights and substandard working conditions our students suffer right along with us.
The Freedom Foundation may portray themselves as pro-worker or pro-education, but the truth is they oppose most of the things we believe in: smaller class sizes, better pay for educators, fully funded public schools and the ability to negotiate with our employers.
We are fortunate to work in a state with pro-union values. Many of our colleagues are not so lucky. I’d encourage you to talk to a teacher who works or has worked in a so-called “right to work” state where unions have been vilified, undermined, and weakened. Some of your very own HEA colleagues used to work in one of these states. The stories of what those students and teachers must endure is offensive. Some of the worst-case scenarios in our state would be a dream scenario for many of these students and teachers.
When we are united, our collective voice achieves powerful results for our students and ourselves. We need to remain unified and strong to build upon our recent successes in local bargains and in Olympia. With a strong, united membership, we have the power to improve and protect our rights and economic security, and to fight for the best interests of our students.
Do not fall for the Freedom Foundation’s dirty tricks. Their offer of a few extra bucks in your pocket may sound enticing during the holiday season, but it will come at the expense of weakening the very profession we all cherish and depend on for our livelihoods. Unions and the American middle class go hand-in-hand, and so do unions and healthy public schools. Attempts to dismantle unions are, pure and simple, an attack on the working class in our country and an attempt to take the power away from you.
If you want to know more about the “Freedom Foundation,” check out the attached flyer.
Do not be fooled. We are stronger together!
Corey McEnry and Megan Miles, Co-Presidents
Hockinson Education Association