Union rights and collective bargaining

Protect the freedom to negotiate

Unlike neighboring states, educators in Minnesota still enjoy the right to collectively bargain our pay and benefits. We can negotiate a fair return for our work and use the power of our numbers to advocate for the resources and policies our students need to succeed.

Unfortunately, corporate interests and the wealthy want to rig the economy in their favor and weaken the voice of workers. For decades, they have tried to destabilize unions through anti-worker legislation and court cases — including here in Minnesota.

That’s why it’s so important for educators to choose union and defend our collective bargaining rights — we have more influence when there are more of us.

Four things to know:

  1. Public employees in Minnesota have enjoyed collective bargaining rights since 1971.
  2. Workers covered by a union-negotiated contract earn, on average, much more than peers at nonunion worksites.
  3. Unions are cool again! A Gallup poll in September 2021 showed 68 percent of Americans approve of labor unions — the highest rate since 71 percent in 1965.
  4. Union membership is diverse, and America’s unions have helped narrow gender and racial pay gaps.

Taking charge:

Gov. Tim Walz supports the rights of public employees to bargain collectively, but the Minnesota Senate is controlled by those who want to enact an anti-union agenda. Only by flipping the Minnesota Senate and keeping a pro-worker majority in the House can Minnesota educators prevent anti-union legislators from taking back educators’ collective bargaining rights, as happened in Iowa and Wisconsin.

Learn more:

Iowa: How to lose collective bargaining in 10 days
Wisconsin: How Act 10 hurt education, the economy


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