Know Your Educator Association Rights
Professional association or union membership is an important decision. You are entitled to make the decision about association membership for yourself with accurate information and without fear of reprisal by a union or employer.
The recent restoration of this right to all public educators in Janus v. AFSCME (2018) has led to some confusion, misinterpretation, and misinformation about what impact your membership decision can and cannot have.
Here are the rights all teachers have when it comes to teacher union or education association membership. For more information, including an explanation of each right and relevant statutes and case law, see the American Educators' Declaration of Educator Association Rights.
Your employer cannot discriminate against you based on your teacher union membership status.
The terms of the negotiated agreement apply to you regardless of your teacher union membership status.
You have the right to join a teacher union.
You cannot be required to join a teacher union.
Non-members cannot be required to pay teacher union dues or fees.
You have the right to join a professional association.
You have employment rights regardless of your teacher union membership status.
You have the right to a representative at a disciplinary meeting.
The Janus ruling applies to all public employees in unionized workplaces, not just agency-fee payers.
The Janus ruling does not prohibit unions from offering local-only or contract-only membership categories
Download a copy of your educator association rights
This page provides general information and is not intended to offer legal advice about specific situations. If you believe your rights related to abstaining from union membership are being violated, please contact your professional association, a public interest law firm, or an attorney.
If you believe your rights related to voluntary union membership are being violated, including discrimination against you by an employer, please contact your union attorney.