QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT OUR UNION

*If a parent or student complains to the administration about me, do I have the right to have someone with me in the meeting called by my supervisor(s) to discuss my situation?
When you have union representation, you have a legal right to have someone with you.

IEA will provide legal assistance to ensure that your rights are protected.

Without bargaining rights, the District has the right to change wages, hours, benefits and working conditions. . Once you have bargaining rights, nothing can change until bargaining has been conducted. All current written and unwritten practices regarding wages, hours, benefits and working conditions will remain intact. The only changes that will be made are those that the membership ratified in a democratic vote. If you “lose” something, you have to agree to it. That is why bargaining usually results in improvements, not losses.

*How will it benefit me in terms of my everyday work?
First of all, when a problem arises related to an individual’s employment, he/she has access to an experienced professional to provide assistance. Moreover, contracts vary widely from district to district. Unions have used this power to negotiate items that suit their members’ needs at the local level.

*In general, what are the benefits of joining a union?
• A collective voice in the decision making process.
• The rights and protections of the Illinois Educational Labor Relations ACT ( IELRA)
• Contract with employee rights clearly defined and a grievance procedure ending in binding arbitration to resolve disputes.
• Credibility; being taken seriously when we raise concerns with our employer
• The resources, expertise and assistance of the IEA-NEA
• Fair treatment

*What rights and protections do we have  under the Illinois Educational Labor relations Act (IELRA)
The employer has exclusive authority to asset wages, hours and benefits and to make other decisions related to our employment. Unorganized employees have very few guaranteed rights or protections unless they have obtained collective bargaining recognition under the IELRA.

The IELRA dramatically limits the employer’s rights to make decisions unilaterally. Under the act, the employer is required to bargain in good faith and in a timely manner all decisions regarding wages, hours, benefits and working conditions with our democratically elected representatives.

*What kind of a union do we have? You are chartered as an autonomous local union affiliated with the IEA-NEA. This means that you will draft and adopt a Constitution and Bylaws to govern our local and elect officers accordingly. You will maintain a local treasury.
All policies regarding the direction of our local will be determined in a democratic manner. IEA will provide our local with professional and legal resources needed to be an effective organization, but you will decide policies and goals for our local.

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