You may recall that rightwing Republican blogger and anti-union activist Chetly Zarko filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to get copies of the emails written by union leaders on school computers. The district released the emails he was not supposed to receive without regard to student confidentially or attorney-client privilege. The HEA filed suit to stop the illegal release of the emails in May 2007.
Zarko used the information to claim the union was using school property illegally and other baseless attacks, but that was quickly debunked because the distinct has a “recognized right” to use the computers.
Zarko has come up with a new charge, and according to the P & A:
“Zarko said he expects to find communications about a small percentage of teachers who wanted to accept an additional 1 percent pay increase on top of what was offered instead of the union-affiliated health benefits, which was a sticking point during negotiations and resulted in HEA protests at school board meetings. This is a matter facing many school districts in Michigan, he said.”
Who cares? There is nothing more democratic in the workplace than a labor union. The union leaders who negotiate the contract are elected by the union membership and the actual contract must be ratified by a vote of the membership. What does it really matter what a “small percentage of teachers” said or think; other than to other HEA members?
What is even funnier is how the newspaper describes Zarko. It calls him “an Oakland County researcher.” His two main goals are to get ink and to bust unions. When he does get mainstream media coverage, they all fail to mention his anti-union ties and his ties to the racist “Michigan Civil Rights Initiative.” He runs a Facebook group pushing the union busting so-called “right to work” law.