California Teacher Freedom – UTLA

    LA Unified teachers do not have to pay for union’s political spending

    Teachers in the LA Unified School District are represented by United Teachers Los Angeles, which allows members to affiliate either with the California Teacher Association or the California Federation of Teachers.

    LA Unified teachers have the option to become agency fee payers and to not have their dues go towards union political activity.

    (Non-ULTA teachers represented by the California Teachers Association have different rules. Click here for CTA details. Non-UTLA teachers represented by the California Federation of Teachers have different rules. Click here for CFT details.)

    To become an agency fee payer and ensure your dues do not go to political activities, you should contact UTLA and request to become an agency fee payer. You should then find out if you need to request a yearly rebate or if LAUSD will decrease the amount withheld from your paycheck.

    UTLA’s phone number is (213) 487-5560.

    Teachers who want help with the process should contact California Teachers Empowerment Network President Larry Sand at 888-290-8471 or for additional help.

    Religious Objector option

    If a teacher wants to become a religious or conscientious objector, a how-to guide is available from National Right to Work. Teachers wishing to become religious objectors should not request to become agency fee payers.

    Free legal assistance to those wanting to become religious objectors is available from the National Right to Work Foundation (email Bruce Cameron at, or from the website, which has helped numerous teachers through the religious objector process.

    Alternative sources of liability insurance

    Alternative sources of liability insurance:  Teachers seeking to replace UTTA’s liability insurance have options from national, non-partisan, professional-educator associations. The Association of American Educators (AAE) and Christian Educators Association International (CEAI) are two such groups. For only $15 a monthAAE provides each member a $2 million liability insurance policy, legal protection and supplementary insurance options (AAE membership application). For less than $20 a month, CEAI also provides members with a $2 million liability insurance policy, legal protection and supplementary insurance options (CEAI membership application).

    Teachers seeking additional information on their rights are encouraged to contact the California Teachers Empowerment Network at 888-290-8471 or

    *   *   * is project of the California Policy Center, California Teachers Empowerment Network, American Association of Educators, and Nevada Policy Research Institute to educate public-sector professionals about their options as employees of unionized workplaces. We welcome new organizational and individual partners and collaborators, with the goal of informing every teacher of their options regarding union membership. 

    The California Policy Center is a 501c3 non-profit public charity. CA Corp. # 3295222. Federal EIN 27-2870463.
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