Do I have to join the union?

No, you are not required to join the union to teach at College of the Canyons. Because you are covered by the collective bargaining agreement, union agency fees are deducted from your paycheck, but union membership is voluntary. Non-members are called "fair share payers," indicating that though they are not members, they are paying their fair share of the cost of negotiating their terms and conditions of employment.

If I join the union, will my fees go up?

No. The agency fees are the same for members and non-members ("fair share payers”).

What does the union do for me?

AFT Local 6262 negotiates the terms and conditions of your employment with COC, including salary, salary schedule, paid absence, evaluation policies, class assignment policies, professional development compensation, committee participation, parking, office hours. . . .virtually everything that comes under the heading of fair treatment. Collective bargaining agreements typically span only a few years; thus, negotiations are almost constant.

How do I stop paying union dues?

All COC part-time instructors are required to pay AFT agency fees per the collective bargaining agreement with the Santa Clarita Community College District (SCCCD). While these fees are often called "union dues," they are actually the fees collected by the union Local to help defray the costs of contract negotiation and other union services that benefit all part-time instructors, regardless of union membership. Non-members are called "fair share payers," a term that refers to paying your fair share of the cost of negotiating your terms and conditions of employment.

Am I automatically a member because you take dues out of my paycheck?

No. To become a member, you must submit a membership application. Until you do so, you are a "fair share payer." For more information on joining the union, please see the "How to Join" section of this website.

What if I don't agree with how the union spends my money?

There is a provision for a rebate of the small portion of the agency fees that is used for union business "in relation to issues and legislation only incidentally related to the terms and conditions of employment, or applied towards the cost of benefits available only to union members." This portion is the "rebateable" portion, as determined by AFT.

Details pertaining to and procedures for requesting the rebateable portion of your fees can be found in these two documents: (please find these documents on the Downloads page of this site)

COC Agency Fee Letter 2014
Non-member Service Fee Rebate Letter