Child Care Union Controversy Not Over

A judge’s ruling against an election of some Minnesota child care providers probably will not stop union attempts to organize them.

“We are very happy with the court’s ruling, though this doesn’t solve our future union issues,” Cloquet’s Heather Falk said. “It does give us more time, without an unfair union election looming, to educate and bring transparency to child care providers and legislators.”

Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton’s executive order setting up a union election of child care providers who receive state subsidies was found unconstitutional because he bypassed the legislative process.

A spokeswoman says Dayton has not decided whether he will appeal. Even if he does not appeal, unions likely will be back.

“Pro-union child care providers forge ahead,” read a news release headline from The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 5 reacting to the court decision.

Union spokeswoman Jennifer Munt stopped short of saying what kind of action could come next.

“We’re united to increase the quality of child care, to improve access for working parents, and to stabilize our profession,” Munt said. “No judge or politician can stop that.”