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AFT, NEA laud merger of North Dakota public employee unions

National leaders of the AFT and the National Education Association are praising the historic Sept. 1 merger of the North Dakota Public Employees Association and the North Dakota Education Association, which is now known as North Dakota United.

NDU becomes the state's largest public employee union, with more than 10,000 members. NDPEA was affiliated with the AFT, while NDEA was affiliated with the NEA. NDU is an affiliate of both national unions.

"This historic merger brings together employees who serve the public in many ways—from great public schools to safe roads to quality health programs—that are the foundation of North Dakota's quality of life," AFT President Randi Weingarten and National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel said in a joint statement.

"These workers will have a more united and effective voice in their efforts to deliver public services, which is good news for North Dakotans, who rely on these services every day. The merger also will strengthen the labor movement in North Dakota and help ensure that all working families in every community participate in the state's economic success."

[Joint AFT/NEA press release]