MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The debate over whether to unionize childcare providers in the state heats up next week. A judge will Monday decide whether to issue an injunction on a lawsuit filed to stop the Dec. 7 vote.

Lisa Thompson, a supporter of unionizing child care, spent Saturday morning making calls to influence the way she approaches her business. She called fellow child care providers to remind them of the upcoming vote to form a union.

“This is providers coming together to work on issues that affect our business and livelihood,” Thompson said.

The effort to form a union is in its sixth year, and it got a big push earlier this month when Gov. Mark Dayton issued an executive order allowing a vote.

“We’re one of the most heavily regulated industries in the state, and we have little say in that process,” Thompson said.

But for every yes vote, there may also be a no vote. However, these no votes will never be counted.

More than a hundred people against unionizing child care showed up at the Capitol Saturday afternoon. Of the more than 11,000 child care providers in Minnesota, less 5,000 will get to vote on this issue. Only child care providers who get state subsidies will be the ones casting a ballot and that’s not sitting well with the more than 6,000 providers who don’t get a say.

“If the union wants us to be a union, why don’t they allow everyone to vote,” said Jean Casper, a child care provider who does not want a vote on unionization.

The possibility of unionizing also has many wondering what type of impact it will have on their business.

“I don’t want to pay fees to a union that I don’t belong to,” said Janet Krutzit, who rallied at the Capitol.

Dayton’s press secretary explained via email why only 4,300 providers were included in the executive order:

“The providers who are registered to get state subsidies have the most direct relationship with the state. That is why they are included in the vote to possibly form a union. The union would meet and confer with state agencies, so it makes the most sense to include the providers who have the most direct relationship with the state.

If a union is formed, and they meet with the commissioners and agree on proposed changes, any changes in law or policy would have to go through the legislative process where everyone would have a chance to make their voices heard.”

Comments (28)
  1. Paul says:

    Dayton should keep his nose out of Unions and do his job.

  2. M says:

    Literally pathetic how many typos are on this website.

  3. Jerry says:

    If daycare providers are employees of the state by all means let them create a union, but if they are independent businesses let them form an association like other businesses.

  4. NoRepresentation says:

    ‘com on…. those union bosses need to re-fill their coffers. They can then provide the same great service as seen by nursing home members…. what a joke! Scare them with rhetoric, sell “potential” benefits, then move on to the next target. These are not the unions my Dad was part of….

    1. Vote Union YES! says:

      Your Father must be proud of his SCAB.

  5. Jake says:

    Talk about a stacked deck against those who don’t want the unions OR the state mandating such a ‘vote’. Was this one of the burning issues in the last gubenatorial vote? I must have missed that ‘debate’. Once you vote them in, you will NEVER get rid of them. When they tell you to STRIKE, you had better obey, or ELSE.

    1. wehrlybird00 says:

      You are really talking out of your ass, Jake. You know nothing about this issue at all, but like all blowhards you write multiple posts liberally sprinkled with opinions contrary to fact, toss in some CAPS to shout down others with more reasoned and reasonable comments. Blah, blah, blah… ad nauseum.

  6. stubby says:

    Just pay-back to dayton’s union buddies for election support.

  7. Benny says:

    A little Chicago politics here in Minnesota. Just like Obama, can’t get it legally through congress just do an executive order.

  8. Little Guy says:

    What wrong with unions? Its all about your right to negotiate with your employer!! Ever try to negotiate one on one- forget it- it doesn’t work. The responses against unionisation are by employers who want to keep their unilateral decision making themselves. Watch out for scare tactics. You go Mark Dayton!!!

    1. KT says:

      These daycare providers are self employed. They don’t have an employer. They can make their own rules. What do they need a union for?

      1. Little Guy says:

        Then unions will not affect their operations, right? Right! Except their relations with the state or others. Right! So, whats the problem?

        1. more free stuff says:

          They just want more of your tax money. Maybe you need to pay more taxes Little Guy.

          1. Little guy says:

            Any actual facts you phony psychophant?

            1. more free stuff says:

              Why so much anger Little Guy?

    2. SW MN Provider says:

      Except We don’t have an employer We are small business owners. Who are we negotiating with. I set my own prices and my own polices. When I do have parents Who receive state aid that is no one business and the state provided me a fair pay rate and I you have a Collage Degree you can receive more from the state. So there is no need for small businesses to unionize. We don’t have employers all it would accomplish is to raise what the state will pay for people receiving assistance and that money comes from all our taxes. If the rate for assistance goes up provider will raise their rates many providers use those numbers and a starting point for their rates.

  9. Crux-no-Biscuit says:

    Well lets assume there is nothing wrong with Unions. Why only allow 40% of the daycares vote? It flies in the face of common sense regardless of which side of the isle one sits. MD got this one 100% wrong.

  10. Ace says:

    I remember in the 40’s or 50’s my dad started a small business and they told him he didn’t pay himself enough and so he had to borrow money to pay his own salary. I’m all for unions, was a union member myself and was on strike and picket lines twice, but this is ridiculous, trying to make self employed people pay union dues and not let them vote.

  11. wehrlybird00 says:

    Folks, Dayton’s action merely allows daycare providers to vote on the issue, which is a purely democratic process. If the majority don’t want to unionize, the “no” vote will prevail. But even if the majority vote “yes” any provider who doesn’t want to join will be allowed the freedom not to, and not to pay any dues. How can those who don’t want to be union members lose??? No matter how strongly against unions you might be, it’s hard to argue that no other Minnesotans should be allowed to make that choice for themselves!

    So truthfully, opposing and obstructing this process is taking a stand against a core American value: allowing each American to vote according to their personal opinion/belief/situation. That is simply un-American.

    1. Milo says:

      You are such an idiot

    2. Jake says:

      You greatly overSIMPLIFY the process and the issue. If so MANY day care providers truly wanted union ‘representation’, they would have been beating down the doors at the capitol for the past year. They haven’t. This is about union MONEY, POWER, and INFLUENCE in elections, it is not about the daycare givers’ best interests as a whole. Pass a ‘Right to Work’ law in MN, then I’ll change my opinion.

  12. Tom says:

    Just let them vote to decide for themselves if they want unionize! Conservatives seem to want everything else put to a vote except this.

    1. Jeff says:

      Fine, but all 11,000 must be included. 4,300 get to vote and 6,700 are forced into something they didn’t get a say in. What a sham.

  13. Jeff says:

    I like how the story says less than 5,000 get to vote and more than 6,000 don’t, making it appear more evenly split, when it’s actually 39.1% to 60.9%. This is misleading and obviously bias.

  14. Jeff says:

    Ultimately, the union could be elected with only 2,151 votes of 11,000 daycare professionals. That’s only 19.6%. How is that fair or democratic?

  15. Jeff says:

    Not to mention that these are private independant businesses who work for themselves, not for MN State. There are already several daycare business associations in MN that lobby for providers, such as Minnesota Child Care Association (MCCA). This isn’t a “Little Guy” employee vs “The Man” executive management, with the power to hire, fire, give raises and promotions. This is private business vs the State. The State is the people of MN and the payments that are being negotiated come from MN taxpayers. The union isn’t going to “stick it to the man”, it’s going to stick it to the people of MN, the very rank and file people (the “Little Guys”), who unions are supposed to be organizing to protect.

  16. Kids Rock 123 says:

    Wrong, Wehrlybird! His action allows only 4,268 providers out of 11,300 to vote on something that WILL affect us all. That is about 1/3 of us AND the outcome will be determined by a majority OF THOSE voting (so an even small majority or the minority decides for us all). ALL CCAP providers WILL be unionized if this passes, explicitly stated in Dayton’s Executive Order and FAQs. Jennifer Munt, spokesperson for AFSCME, says that they want to unionize ALL of us!

    People obviously DO NOT know the facts! Minnesota is a Fair Share state and we will be FORCED to either join the union and pay membership dues or pay fair share fees. That is what has happened in all of the 13 unionized states (down to 13 since 2 realized the unions didn’t do ANYTHING except take money from providers, so the rescinded the orders after a few years), where AFSCME and SEIU have been the unions for licensed childcare providers.

    This is so far from an American process, WehrlyBird! If it was American, it would follow the Constitution and allow the LEGISLATURE to make these changes. Also, EVERY change the unions make to licensing regulations and requirements will affect ALL 11,300 of us. That’s not representative government and is certainly NOT representative voting.

    For the record, I am NOT anti-union as I think they have their place, but they certainly don’t belong in licensed family child cares or with self-employed small business owners!

    Also, ALL of the union organizers going door to door are PAID very well by the unions, especially the ones who say they’re childcare providers. Give me a name and I’ll tell you how much they made (Department of Labor has all of their pay records if you want to check yourself). Those “providers” doing AFSCME’s phone bank are all PAID union employees, FYI. All of us opposed to childcare unionization ARE NOT paid and are putting in FT hours to get the facts out to our fellow providers and the public.

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