Organizing in VUE

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This page is for our Technology Services staff and Extended Day workers.  This is where we will post important information regarding our efforts to bring all these units into the Volusia United Educators.  

A collection of "show of interest" cards has started!!!  Please click here (Union Interest Card) to get a copy of the card or be on the look out for the card in your mailbox in the coming days.  All cards must be returned ASAP! 

Why Unions are important?

  1. The union gives you a voice at work!  We don't just negotiate salary, benefits and working conditions, we advocate for what you need to do your job!  
  2. With a union, you have a way to problem solve, be proactive and make suggestions for your work place and our district.  Something that is usually difficult to do by yourself.
  3. With a union, you have access to highly trained staff at our VUE office.  The staff can assist you with questions, representation and problem solving.  If you are not sure if what you are being asked to do is appropriate, just make a call to your VUE office.  If you feel you are being picked on or unfairly targeted by your administrator/supervisor, just pick up the phone and call your VUE office.  If you feel that your workload is unfair or your job responsibilities are unclear, just pick up the phone and call your VUE office.  
  4. If someone makes an accusation against you, just call the VUE office, our team of staff and lawyers are here to assist you.
  5. While we cannot solve every issue, we will always work to make sure your voice is heard and that you are treated fairly.  When you have a contract, you have clear rights and responsibilities. 
  6. Did you know that most employees covered by a union contract in our district have tenure after 3 years of working?  As a nurse, technology service staff member or extended day worker, you currently do not have any job protection.  This will be one of the first issues we address, should your group decide to become part of VUE!
  7. Did you know that the union is governed by our members?  Members continually have input into decisions made by our VUE, including what issues we want to bring to the bargaining table.
  8. Did you know that our VUE advocates for issues outside of bargaining.  Even if an issue is not in the contract, we will always advocate for doing what is right for our students and what is fair for all our members.  

How much will Dues be, if we become part of the Union?

Until we secure the right to represent you, there will be no dues for you to pay.  Once we win the right to represent your bargaining unit, dues will be structured like our para-professionals and office specialists.  Dues are based on your income.  These dues are significantly less than the dues paid by instructional staff (teachers).    

  • For those making $15,000 or less, dues are $8.70 per paycheck if you receive 20 checks per year, $7.91 per pay for 22 checks and $7.25 for 24 checks.
  • For those making between $15,001 and $30,000, dues are $15.60 per paycheck if you receive 20 checks per year $14.18 per paycheck for 22 checks and $13.00 per paycheck for 24 checks.
  • For those making over $30,000 per year, dues were just reduced to $21.60 per paycheck  for those who receive 20 checks per year, $19.64 for 22 checks and $18.00 for 24 checks.

What are Dues for?

  • Your dues include membership in our local, state and national unions.
  • Our local dues pay for the VUE office, staff and programs.  Our staff is highly trained to assist members with contract concerns, payroll issues, workplace challenges and representation should an accusation be made against you.  VUE also offers training to members based on your needs.  VUE also negotiates our contracts, which includes pay, health insurance and more.
  • Our State dues support the Florida Education Association (FEA), which advocates for us at the state level, provides attorneys for work related cases, provides training for our staff and leadership and connects us with other unions across the state.
  • Our national dues support the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the National Education Association (NEA).  Together, our national unions represent over 4 million teachers and educational support staff in our nation.  Our national unions provide support for legal representation, advocate for public education at the national level, provide training and conference for members in all areas, including nurses, technology services and extended day programs.

What other Benefits do we get with our membership in VUE?

  • VUE members have access to a host of member benefits.  We get discounts when buying cars, on auto and home insurance, when traveling, shopping and eating out.  
  • Members have saved over $4,000 when buying a new car, usually twice what the average car buyer saves.
  • Members save hundreds of dollars a year by using either of the 2 auto insurance providers that provide our members with discounts.
  • Members save when they go to the movies, as much as $4 per ticket.
  • Members have access to disability insurance that covers as much or more than the district disability insurance, but at much lower rates.
  • Members save on car rentals, hotels and in many restaurants.
  • Currently our members have access to purchase a week's vacation at 2 and 3 bedroom condos all over the country for only $199 for a week. 
  • The list goes on and on.  There are so many ways you can save more than your unions dues.  Again, you will not pay any dues unless we successfully organize your unit into our VUE.

Is there Really an Interest in being part of the union?

You are not alone.  There are more than 250 employees who work as extended day workers, technology service workers and school nurses in our district.  None of you currently have the ability to be part of the union.  So far, only 4 people have said, they have no desire to be part of VUE and nearly 40% have already said they will sign a card.  Our goal is to have at least 60% of you sign a card to be represented by our VUE.

 Are there any consequences for signing a card and wanting to become part of VUE?

NO! Federal and state law protects your right to be be part of a union or not.  It would be illegal for anyone in the district to discriminate, retaliate, threaten, discipline or fire you for signing a card or talking about getting a unified voice at work.  You have the legal and constitutional right to be represented by a union and to join the union.

Does Signing a card mean we will have a union?

Not right away.  First, we need at least 60% of you to sign and return the card to be represented by the union.  Once we have the 60% we will present the number to the district and ask them to voluntarily recognize you as part of VUE.  If the district agrees, we will prepare the paperwork for the state to finalize union representation.  This could take a month or longer.  If the district does not agree to voluntarily recognize your unit as part of VUE, we will contact the state so that a vote can be conducted.  The vote will be set and conducted by the state and will require at least 50% of you saying yes.  This process will take several months.  While we hope the district will voluntarily recognize your desire to be represented by VUE, as most other employees in the district are, we are not confident they will.

Does signing the card make me a union member?

There are two parts to the card.  The top part states you want to be represented by VUE.  This means you want to have a contract that clearly states your rights, pay and benefits.  This includes your right to tenure, your right to specific working conditions, work hours and paid time off.  The bottom part of the card is for your membership in VUE.  This part says that should we win representation, you will be a member of VUE.  This does not get implemented until we complete the process for bringing your unit/department into VUE.  While Florida law does not require anyone to be a member, we know the stronger our membership is, the more we can accomplish together.  Also know that Florida law does allow for any member to terminate their membership in the union without 30 days written notice.  To better represent your interests, we encourage you to complete both parts of the card.  However, the top part is the legal part to secure a collective contract for your unit/department.  This part is needed in order for us to proceed with getting a union contract for you.