Friday, August 16, 2013

AFT Drops Hammer on Dearborn Federation of School Employees

If I could Photoshop guess whose face you'd see?
Randi must think she is Lincoln after the Fort Sumpter attack. Are you surprised that our wonderful national union leaders in the AFT would resort to goon tactics when questions of secession arise within a local?
These AFT people showed up at 1107 Washington , the DFSE office on Monday, July 22 at 9:00 a.m. demanding the keys, files, passwords, home addresses, and everything else!!!!!  They were asked to leave and refused. The Dearborn Police were called and they asked them to leave. The AFT told the police they were not leaving. The police escorted the AFT reps to the sidewalk and told them not to come back without a Court Order.   Before AFT left, they unplugged our computers.
Are you surprised that our wonderful national union leaders in the AFT would resort to goon tactics when questions of secession arise within a local? (I've always said that if an opposition ever won a close election in NYC Unity would never turn over the keys to 52 Broadway. They would go to the AFT to protest the election.)

But I do have mixed feelings about locals that want to leave the AFT. I'd rather see them stay and battle. Imagine of the FMPR's 40,000 members had remained to join with other anti-ed deformers?

Mike Antonucci of EIA has tracked these AFT invasions for years and even though Mike has an anti-union bent he is often the only one to report on these events and Ed Notes has picked up on them.

Here is one report we did:
Feb 24, 2008
The FMPR has successfully fought government attempts to squash the voice of teachers and community in decision-making in Puerto Rico's school system. The FMPR effectively seceded in 2006 from American Federation of 

And another:
Aug 25, 2010
Last year we reported on how Randi Weingarten sent in the AFT goons to invade the offices of a nurses local in Portland Oregon after they held a meeting to discuss disaffiliation from the AFT (see below for links). We had ...
Here is Mike's July 30 report which I had sitting in draft version and forgot to post.

AFT Troops Topple Another Local Affiliate

Written By: Mike Antonucci - Jul• 30•13

Let’s face it, the National Education Association is a bunch of amateurs when it comes to dropping the hammer on an uppity affiliate. The national office of the American Federation of Teachers simply won’t tolerate any talk of local affiliates abandoning the reservation and making their own way.
AFT has a long tradition of staging a coup de  main in locals that disaffiliated, or even tried to disaffiliate. The union failed to crush an uprising in Puerto Rico, but it still employed the same tactics against the Colorado Federation of Public Employees and the Oregon Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals. In the latter case, the U.S. Department of Labor declared AFT’s actions unlawful. And moot.

The latest target of AFT’s wrath is the Dearborn Federation of School Employees (DFSE), a 900-member education support employee local in Michigan. AFT claims in a civil suit against DFSE that the union president conducted a disaffiliation vote in April without following the by-laws. According to the Detroit News, AFT “held an evidentiary hearing June 14 and placed the local under temporary trusteeship.”

“The incumbent officers aren’t prepared to comply with AFT orders. … They want to hang on as long as they can,” said AFT attorney Bruce Miller. “We want them to relinquish their office, AFT will take over the local and restore democratic practices and pull together the warring factions. All of the votes were against getting out of the AFT.”

As you might imagine, those incumbent officers have a different tale to tell. In an open letter to members, DFSE president Sharon Korhonen and five other union officers describe an out-of-control national affiliate:
No one is taking this union over. Do not listen to lies. These AFT people showed up at 1107 Washington , the DFSE office on Monday, July 22 at 9:00 a.m. demanding the keys, files, passwords, home addresses, and everything else!!!!! They were asked to leave and refused. The Dearborn Police were called and they asked them to leave. The AFT told the police they were not leaving. The police escorted the AFT reps to the sidewalk and told them not to come back without a Court Order. Before AFT left, they unplugged our computers.
…If AFT’s sole interest is to ensure the well being of the DFSE members, they have an odd way of doing it. On the accusations of three members, AFT has attempted to take over the office, send the office help home, disconnect the computers and take over your union dues. They have limited the actions of our lawyer and frozen our money, making it impossible to pay utilities, rent and HFCC scholarships, among other obligations.
Membership involvement does “continue to be a hallmark of a strong union,” and that is why we are relying on your active participation to create a stronger DFSE. Let’s take off the gloves and get in this fight. AFT’s actions by their statement, has been instigated by three disgruntled members. Didn’t think in this country you could seize control and force a new election when three members are unhappy with the outcome of the last election. Dictators gain power when people don’t think and don’t seek the truth.
It looks like this will be hashed out in county court. I suggest that local affiliates with a notion about leaving AFT plan accordingly.

Here is the complete DFSE letter posted at http://dfse4750.net/

Letter to DSFE members


July 25, 2013

To All DFSE Members,

This is in response to a letter that was sent to many of you, including former DFSE members currently working at HFCC. You have the right to know what is not true.

No one is taking this union over. Do not listen to lies. These AFT people showed up at 1107 Washington , the DFSE office on Monday, July 22 at 9:00 a.m. demanding the keys, files, passwords, home addresses, and everything else!!!!!  They were asked to leave and refused. The Dearborn Police were called and they asked them to leave. The AFT told the police they were not leaving. The police escorted the AFT reps to the sidewalk and told them not to come back without a Court Order.   Before AFT left, they unplugged our computers.

There was never retaliation against any union members. According to our Constitution, Article XXVII, section 12, Any member of the Executive Board accused of malfeasance, misfeasance, or nonfeasance shall be suspended from the Executive Board pending trial. Two members of the DFSE Executive board were charged by other members, not the president.

The allegations of repeated attempts to disaffiliate from AFT stems from the April issue of the Forward which was to provide space for both sides. The “Con” side was written by a para pro and the AFT representative, Ginger, was asked to write the “Pro” side. Publication deadlines were extended twice for the AFT rep, yet no arguments were submitted.



Any real hearings on decisions that would affect the direction of the local were addressed at monthly union meetings. No one was stopped from speaking, including members of the Executive Board. The allegation that erroneous information was sent is one concerning a court case dropped by AFT, which could have been about our 3% illegally taken from us in 2010. AFT was asked for clarification before the e-mail was sent. No call back, no clarification was given. No response. We attached a copy of the Court Order showing the case was withdrawn. AFT provided nothing.

If AFT’s sole interest is to ensure the well being of the DFSE members, they have an odd way of doing it. On the accusations of three members, AFT has attempted to take over the office, send the office help home, disconnect the computers and take over your union dues.. They have limited the actions of our lawyer and frozen our money, making it impossible to pay utilities, rent and HFCC scholarships, among other obligations.

Membership involvement does “continue to be a hallmark of a strong union,” and that is why we are relying on your active participation to create a stronger DFSE. Let’s take off the gloves and get in this fight. AFT’s actions by their statement, has been instigated by three disgruntled members. Didn’t think in this country you could seize control and force a new election when three members are unhappy with the outcome of the last election. Dictators gain power when people don’t think and don’t seek the truth...AFT is going around to different buildings telling partial truths and avoiding questions by saying that they DON’T know what their lawyers are doing and what the “show cause hearing” is about.

The” AFT Team” that are going around having meetings with members, talk about lost, missing funds, even though an independent CPA has audited the DFSE books each and every year with no irregularities, missing, lost or stolen funds. Independent CPAs are required by law to include such findings in their reports. Financial reports are given at every meeting. Reports have been redesigned many times to provide the membership the information they requested. Audits were done by a CPA and available at each union meeting. An official copy has never been passed out to members, but is always available for viewing.

A Union to be effective must stand together for the GOOD OF ALL MEMBERS, not any one person or any one group’s interest. Your Union has always demonstrated its ability to defend its members to the fullest and will defend the members and the majority against this and all atrocities.

This Union, as it has always done, will continue to tell it’s members the truth, answer all questions and give the members answers to all the rumors. If you have any questions, or hear any rumors call the DFSE office at 313-274-5900 for the truth.



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