The Milwaukee paper has a very good, and very long, story about the history of Wisconsin’s public sector unions. It goes back to their foundation, covers the illegal teacher strikes and responses in the 70s, the growth in the 80s, the political concentration in the 90s, and what’s been happening since Act 10. It is a pretty straight forward piece and worth the read.
I found this little tidbit interesting:
After Act 10’s passage, the 4,500-member Milwaukee union took a hard look at the local’s work and found that 85% of its time went toward litigating disputes and misconduct cases involving 2% of its members.
To broaden the union’s appeal to potential members, especially younger teachers, leaders shifted to working with the district on improved classroom practices, new student discipline techniques and culturally responsive teaching.
What a nice consequence of Act 10 for Milwaukee’s teachers. Instead of focusing the vast majority of resources on protecting bad apples, the union is trying to do things to benefit the majority of teachers. I know they will never admit it, but surely some of Milwaukee’s teachers are appreciative of the union’s renewed focus – even if it is a consequence of Act 10.