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Public higher education employees deserve the right to pay dues to any organization they choose through the process of payroll deduction. It seems like a simple matter, yet there is legislation restricting access to this right and proposed legislation to eliminate this right completely.
Why is payroll deduction important for UCW-CWA? For some it gives us legitimacy as an official organization for employees at Tennessee’s publicly funded colleges and universities. It helps us sustain our organization financially without having to hand collect dues from hundreds and even thousands of members monthly.
Every successful state worker union has unequivocally stated that having payroll deduction for union dues has helped their organization grow. Payroll deduction is linked directly with our right to organize and our right to exist, and is part of the road to increased power at higher education instiutitons acorss Tennessee and ultimately the right to collectively bargain with unitersity and state administrators.
What we are asking the state legislature to do, and what they are refusing to do, is not wild-eyed or radical. In fact, a number of our “peer institutions” (the ones university officials are always asking us to compare TBR and UT schools with) are already doing what university and state officials refuse to do.
The list below is by no means an exhaustive list of southern universities (and state governments!) that facilitate union payroll deductions for employees who request that they do so.
Please join us in our fight for increases rights for state employees by contacting your legislators and UT and TBR administration about this issue.
Payroll deduction for unionized state employees in the South:
University of North Carolina (UE)
University of Virginia (CWA)
Texas state employees (CWA)
Mississippi state employees (CWA)
Georgia state employees (SEIU)
Florida University System (AFSCME)
Kentucky state employees
Organizations at UT and TBR schools with payroll deduction:
Tennessee State Employees Association [TSEA]
American Association of University Professors [AAUP]