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NPR Affiliate: Thoughtful Union Trying to ‘Protect’ its Members From Right to Work

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

National Public Radio is so biased isn’t not even funny anymore. Consider the spin on this story by WDET, the Detroit-area affiliate of NPR:

Wayne State Univesrity’s [sic] faculty union is hoping to protect its members from the impact of Michigan’s right-to-work law, which takes effect in the spring. The union wants the university to lock dues into its next contract for 10 years, to shield members from the law banning mandatory membership and fees as a condition of employment.

Gee, how thoughtful. The union is trying to “protect” its members from making a choice. And the union is going to “lock dues” to “shield” mandatory dues payers from making that choice.

Who is WDET kidding?

In the interview with union president Charlie Parrish, host Pat Batcheller asks why the union wants to “poke the bear” – the Republican-led legislature in Lansing that controls the university’s revenue stream.

“Well, I would hope that the Republican legislators would be more responsible in terms of what the long-run needs of our institution are instead of embroiling, getting involved in this particular issue,” Parrish said.

In other words, go fly a kite, Republican legislators.

Parrish also said they’re seeking a 10-year guarantee on compulsory dues to “assure their power” for a “reasonable amount of time.”

He added that his union has been authorized to strike if they are unable to reach a new contract with the university. Public employee strikes are illegal under Michigan law.


A strike doesn’t seem too likely. Detroit News’ NoIan Finley notes that Wayne State University’s “board of trustees (is) made up nearly entirely by Democrats whose election campaigns were financed by labor unions.”

If the two sides manage to reach a sweetheart deal in time for Valentine’s Day, we can only imagine the ridiculous spin WDET might put on that story.

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