The union is obligated to represent its members interests. The union surveyed its members prior to entering bargaining and the members spoke loudly and clearly: Retain our health insurance options.
MTI members value Wisconsin Physicians Service because it enables freedom of choice in medical providers. And MTI members value the services of Group Health Cooperative. However, both GHC and WPS coverage would be in jeopardy under the district’s proposal.
GHC has the option of increasing its premium by 2 percent for each additional HMO offered by the district. Adding other HMOs would undercut the financial base of employees necessary to maintain the foundation of the WPS option.
Insurance is supposed to assure economic stability. Revenue controls undercut this basic principal of employment benefits, as it causes even the best intentioned individuals to think about reducing the quality of insurance to provide wages. MTI members have not been willing to take that risk.
Lawrie Kobza’s statement. Madison School Board discussion & vote on the recent MTI Teacher contract. Matthews is Executive Director of Madison Teachers, Inc. and sits on the Board of Wisconsin Physicians Service.