Skip to comments.AT WAR WITH THE TEACHERS UNIONS: Part 2 - Teachers Have the Right to Take a Religious Exemption
Posted on 11/10/2005 8:26:46 AM PST by doug from upland
Part 1 - Are You Ready to Enlist and Fight the Great Battle?
NOTE: this is the 2nd part in a series of posts in which we will discuss concrete steps to do battle with and ultimately substantially defund teachers unions. These unions are clearly a subsidiary of the DemocRATic Party, and they are a big part of what is wrong with public education.
What do you do if you are a teacher unhappy about the leftist agenda being pushed by your school district? To make it even more egregious, how do you like a significant portion of your union dues being used for political purposes that push such agenda?
There is good news for you. You may take a "Religious Exemption," and have ALL OF YOUR DUES go to a charity. They might make it a little difficult for you to do, but the law is on your side.
A classic case of union abuse occured at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, California.
Professor Prevails, Union Capitulates
PACIFIC JUSTICE INSTITUTE
23 April, 2003
San Luis Obispo, CA - After a year of battling, the Cuesta College Federation of Teachers finally agreed to allow one of its professors to have all of his union dues diverted to a charity of his choice. Despite making repeated requests, Professor Paul Bauer had previously been denied the right to divert his mandatory "fair share" union fees to a charity that did not conflict with his religious convictions. The choice of charities to which the union had restricted this instructor were the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance, and a local scholarship fund that was clearly geared toward furthering labor union interests.
Acting on behalf of the instructor, the Pacific Justice Institute made several written formal demands to the union that it either provide a list of acceptable charities, or allow the instructor to independently select his own desired charities. In order to prevent a lawsuit against them, the union finally capitulated. "I am relieved this is finally over," said Professor Bauer. "I did not want to go to trial, but would have if it had been necessary. I am extremely grateful to Pacific Justice Institute and their Affiliate Attorney Richard Kahdeman for their valuable representation."
"Under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, the unions not only have a legal obligation to refrain from discriminating on the basis of religion, they must reasonably accommodate the religious practices and beliefs of the employees they purportedly represent," said Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute. "Compliance with Title VII does not end with the union grudgingly agreeing to divert a religious objector's fees to charity. The whole purpose of accommodation would be defeated if an employee could be made to support an organization or fund that profoundly offends his religious convictions."
The Pacific Justice Institute is a non-profit 501(c)(3) legal defense organization specializing in the defense of religious freedom, parental rights, and other civil liberties.
PACIFIC JUSTICE INSTITUTE
P.O. Box 4366 Citrus Heights CA 95611
Phone:(916) 857-6900 Fax:(916) 857-6902
HERE IS WHAT THE UNION AT CUESTA COLLEGE TRIED TO PULL OFF IN 2001
RELIGIOUS OBJECTOR STORY from Academia.org
I CHOOSE CHARITY DOT ORG - includes very helpful links and resources
In Part 1 of this series, I asked for organizational help. Will someone volunteer to manage a ping list? Will someone volunteer to help assign tasks?
If we can get some significant FReeper participation in sending email to teachers, we might be able to make a difference. There are many teachers, particulary in California, who are quite upset that the union confiscated more money without permission to fight Proposition 75. They need a little assistance in knowing what to do. The premier conservative activist site on the Internet should be able to give that assistance.
Imagine several million dollars going to the Boy Scouts instead of the union thugs. Maybe we can help getting this snowball rolling downhill.
EVERGREEN FREEDOM FOUNDATION has been doing great work battling the unions.
If I had to raise my kids again, they would NEVER GET NEAR A GOVERNMENT-SOCIALIST school again. NEVER!!!
Is there schools close to you with websites that give teacher email? We are going to have suggestions for what to send them, such as forms and links where they can get help. If the union refuses to make them aware of their rights, somebody has to do it.
If the union refuses to make them aware of their rights, somebody has to do it.
I hear ya, but the teachers, themselves, should be the ones standing up to the unions. The teachers ARE THE UNION! The teachers should collectively stand up and say "UNIONS, YOU NO LONGER EXIST" and you get no more of my money or support. Gray Davis spent the vast majority of his disasterous tenure as governor, extorting money (pay to play) from the teachers and other unions. You would have thought that the teachers would have learned their lesson, but they did not. Unions have no legal standing -- they are just groups of THUGS AND CROOKS that have gained sideline political support from the Thugocrats in California...enforcers, if you will.
All unions should be eliminated, IMHO. They are only vehicles of extortion and operate against the public interest.
i will help as much as i can, but i have trouble typing since i have just one hand at the moment.
if no one steps up, be sure to let me know, i will do all i can.
Not only should they be upset about their dues being raised involuntarily just to fight the propositions, the unions are now gearing up for their next target, defeating Arnold's re-election - it's their #1 priority. So, there is no way that the dues increase is going to be rescinded, just diverted to their new fight.
While speaking of schools and education, Doug, you need to be very careful with grammar. :)
Well, are you willing to send out some emails when we are ready with the marching orders?
The union at Cuesta College thought it could get away with it. They were obviously quite upset that someone challenged them. It took help from the Pacific Justice Institute to get them to back down. Case law keeps evolving on these issues. They did not want to lose a court battle that would have been precedent to be used across the nation. Such would have emboldened the teachers who are still afraid to stand up to them.
When we have the forms ready, are you ready to start emailing?
excellent. The left gets most of its money by involuntary "contributions".
Will you join the email campaign?
Doug, I know some Christian teachers in my church, so when you get the forms ready, let me know, and I will start an email chain to get them to teachers.
Quite a coincidence. A short time ago I was searching on the internet to see if there is an organization of Christian teachers who are in the public school. Thanks for the offer of help.
They have about 8,000 members. Many of the members have not opted out because they are afraid and have been intimidated. We really have some work to do here.
Thanks. Yes, I am aware of that group. I visited their headquarters in Pasadena about 20 years ago. And it is most definitely true that most Christain teachers don't know about it or the teachers are intimidated by their current union.
Imagine if 5,000 members gave their $800 to charity. $4,000,000 less to the unions. Imagine if just 50,000 of the 2.7 million member NEA did it. That's $40,000,000 the unions wouldn't have. How about 500,000? That's $400,000,000.
Christian Teachers Group is Alternative to Left-Wing NEA
"Parents must not abdicate their parental responsibilities to their child's public school," says Finn Laursen. Laursen is executive director of Christian Educators Association International (CEAI). He is himself a product of public schools and worked 32 years in public schools.
Founded in 1953, CEAI became the first national organization of professional Christian educators working in public, private and charter schools. From the beginning, the group has served the education community by encouraging, equipping and empowering Christian educators in public and private education.
For many, CEAI is the perfect alternative to the National Education Association, a teachers union that has been leaning hard to the political left for decades. Like NEA, CEAI provides many benefits for its members, such as professional liability insurance. It also views teaching as a God-given calling and ministry and promotes the Judeo-Christian ethic in public schools.
Recent Issue Concerns: Homosexual Agenda, Abortion CEAI does not become involved in local school debates. However, when moral concerns or parental rights are at stake, CEAI is eager to see parent-friendly results. For example, in Lawton, Oklahoma, CEAI regional director David Williams learned in January that the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network (GLSEN) was attempting to form an affiliate at his son's high school. Lawton is a city of 81,000 in southwest Oklahoma.
Williams, who teaches in another school district, went into action. First he sought prayer from believers in the area. The local paper published his letter to the editor, and he enlisted the help of KVRS radio station manager Dan Allen. KVRS is the local American Family Radio station. Next came a local TV story addressing equal access and parental involvement. Local church members distributed materials by former homosexuals to students at the high school. Hundreds of e-mails went to local politicians, school board members, teachers and parents.
"To make a long story short," says Williams, "the club was voted down by the student government. What was intended to quietly appear without parent notification was thwarted." One result of the project was a practical 10-step plan of action that Williams will furnish to others who face the homosexual agenda in local public schools. (Williams can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)
As a former public school counselor and administrator, Laursen agrees that teachers legally function in the role of parents when they supervise and teach children during the school day. However, he says schools should always respect the parent-child relationship.
As an example Laursen recently commended the school board in Roseville, California, for its decision regarding students leaving campus for medical procedures, including abortion. The school board was expected to amend district policy to allow students to secure such procedures without parental knowledge.
However, when parents learned of the proposed change, they packed the January 4 board meeting and found the board responsive to their concerns and rights.
School spokesman Larry Brubaker told AFA Journal that, while this issue is certainly divisive in many school systems, the Roseville board stood with their parents. "The school will not release students for medical reasons without parental permission," he said. The city of 45,000 is near Sacramento and has 8,000 students in its school district.
2005 Prayer Focus
CEAI is not politically aggressive, and its leaders take care not to enter the public arena in a combative stance. One CEAI vision for 2005 is to improve education in America through prayer and networking. The current prayer campaign is called "Raise Your Hand."
"The goal [of the campaign]," said Williams, "is to enroll one million prayer partners who are committed to praying for their own local schools. The prayer focus is to have a teacher encouragement group offering prayer support in every school nationwide."
The overriding purpose of everything the group does is defined in this -- to preserve traditional Christian values of faith and family in our schools. CEAI offers personnel in public or Christian schools -- administrators, teachers and support staff -- a place to call their professional home.
Randall Murphree, a regular contributor to AgapePress, is editor of AFA Journal, a monthly publication of the American Family Association. This article appeared in the April 2005 issue.
Christian Educators Association International (www.ceai.org)
Raise Your Hand (www.raiseyourhand.us)
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